FIFA gives Sepp Blatter's former right-hand man Jerome Valcke 12-year ban

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FIFA's ethics committee has imposed a 12-year ban on Sepp Blatter's former right-hand man Jerome Valcke over misconduct offences including involvement in a World Cup tickets scandal, TV rights sales and using a private jet for personal reasons.

The Frenchman, who was formally dismissed as FIFA secretary general last month, has been banned from all football-related activity for 12 years and fined 100,000 Swiss francs (almost ?71,000).

The ruling follows eight-year bans imposed on Blatter and Michel Platini in December over a ?1.3million payment made by FIFA to the UEFA president.

Valcke negotiated to sell World Cup television rights to the Caribbean for below their true value, and attempted to destroy evidence, according to a statement from the ethics committee.

The statement said: "Amongst other things, the adjudicatory chamber found that a sports marketing firm had gained an undue advantage from the selling of FIFA World Cup tickets.

"In this respect, not only did Mr Valcke do nothing to stop these activities, he even encouraged the persons responsible to do so. Furthermore, Mr Valcke repeatedly encouraged them to breach an agreement concluded between FIFA and the sports marketing firm.

"Moreover, by travelling at FIFA's expense purely for sightseeing reasons as well as repeatedly choosing private flights for his trips over commercial flights without any business rationale for doing so, Mr Valcke gained an advantage for himself and relatives.

"In doing so, Mr Valcke acted against FIFA's best interests and caused considerable financial damage to FIFA."

It added: "Concerning the issue of TV and media rights for the Caribbean, it was found that Mr Valcke attempted to grant the TV and media rights for the 2018 and 2022 FIFA World Cups to a third party for a fee far below their actual market value and had taken concrete preparatory action in this regard."

Disgraced former FIFA vice-president Jack Warner, who has been indicted by the US justice department on corruption charges, has previously claimed he refused to endorse Blatter in the June 2011 election even though he was offered the rights to the 2018 and 2022 World Cup for a nominal fee.

The statement said Valcke tried to cover his tracks before he was suspended from his post.

It added: "Furthermore, it was found that Mr Valcke deliberately tried to obstruct the ongoing proceedings against him by attempting to delete or deleting several files and folders relevant to the investigation, despite being aware of his duty to preserve all data and to collaborate in order to establish the facts of the case."

Valcke's New York-based lawyer Barry Berke said the ban showed the ethics committee to be "not credible".

He said in a statement: "Mr. Valcke is confident that when all the facts come out, it will be clear that he did absolutely nothing wrong in carrying out his duties for the good of FIFA and the sport."

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