Senior FIFA officials indicted for bribes totalling 200million US dollars

Published Add your comment

Football News

The sheer scale of FIFA's corruption scandal was laid bare by fresh indictments for bribes totalling 200million US dollars with two of the organisation's most senior officials accused of embezzling huge sums destined for disaster relief and development projects.

The US department of justice indictments disclose that disgraced former FIFA vice-president Jack Warner and his successor Jeffrey Webb - who has pleaded guilty to seven charges - siphoned off development and relief money destined for the very poorest countries in their Caribbean confederation.

US attorney general Loretta Lynch told a news conference: "The betrayal of trust is truly outrageous."

And she warned those officials still to be arrested: "You will not wait us out and you will not escape our focus.

"Certain of the defendants and their co-conspirators, including the defendant Jack Warner and Jeffrey Webb, took advantage of these opportunities and embezzled or otherwise personally appropriated funds provided by FIFA, including funds intended for natural disaster relief."

It is the first official confirmation of allegations that Warner diverted 750,000 US dollars in emergency funds donated by FIFA and the Korean Football Association intended for victims of the 2010 Haiti earthquake. He is currently fighting extradition from Trinidad to the USA.

Webb, a banker from the Cayman Islands, has pleaded guilty to racketeering conspiracy, three counts of wire fraud conspiracy and three counts of money laundering conspiracy. As part of his plea, Webb agreed to forfeit more than 6.7million US dollars.

Lynch announced the new indictments including against six current and former executive committee members: FIFA vice-presidents Alfredo Hawit of Honduras and Juan Angel Napout of Paraguay, arrested in dawn swoops in Zurich, and fresh corruption charges against a total of 16 officials for sums totalling 200 million US dollars mostly relating to TV and marketing deals in north, south and central America and the Caribbean.

Ricardo Teixeira, the disgraced Brazilian who quit FIFA's executive committee in 2012 after it was revealed he had received millions of pounds in bribes from FIFA's former marketing company ISL, his successor Marco Polo Del Nero, and Guatemala's Rafael Salguero have also been indicted. It brings to 11 the total number of current or former ExCo members facing charges.

At a news conference in Zurich, acting FIFA president Issa Hayatou insisted that neither he nor the organisation is corrupt.

Hayatou said: ''FIFA is not corrupt. We have individuals that have shown negative behaviour. Do not generalise the situation. There are lots of people in FIFA for more than 20 or 30 years that have not been accused of anything.''

Hayatou, who had a kidney transplant three weeks ago, appeared to fall asleep during the press conference but insisted he was well enough to act as president.

He said: ''I have small problems of health but this does not stop me being here before you.''

The FIFA corruption scandal first broke in May when seven officials, including Webb, were arrested in Zurich. Sepp Blatter announced on June 2 he would step down as president after FIFA was forced to admit that it had paid 10million US dollars destined for the South Africa World Cup to an account controlled by Warner.

Meanwhile, FIFA's ExCo has discussed expanding the World Cup from 32 teams to 40 and have ordered officials to come up with a feasibility study for the plan.


Article Comments

Read more

Report author of article

Please let us know if you believe this article is in violation of our editorial policy, please only report articles for one of the following reasons.

Report author


This article has been written by a member of the GiveMeSport Writing Academy and does not represent the views of or SportsNewMedia. The views and opinions expressed are solely that of the author credited at the top of this article. and SportsNewMedia do not take any responsibility for the content of its contributors.

Want more content like this?

Like our GiveMeSport Facebook Page and you will get this directly to you.

Already Subscribed to Facebook, don't ask me again

Follow GiveMeSport on Twitter and you will get this directly to you.

Already Following, don't ask me again