Wednesday, 27 May 2015

FIFA Officials Face US Extradition After Being Arrested On £65m Bribery/Corruption Charges

SIX FIFA officials have been arrested on suspicion of getting and paying £65million in bribes.

Authorities reportedly plan to extradite the officials to the United States following a three-year FBI investigation. 
The group will be extradited because it is alleged that the bribes were arranged in the US.
Vice-president Jeffrey Webb, ex-vice president Jack Warner and Thai official Worawi Makudi are among those expected to face charges, reports claimed.
The charges reportedly include wire fraud, racketeering and money laundering.
It's claimed more than a dozen policemen arrived at a five-star hotel in the Swiss capital, while the leaders were gathering for their annual meeting.
Journalist Michael S. Schmidt tweeted: "FIFA execs not being led out in handcuffs. Very peaceful. Hotel staff meanwhile is freaking out.

The organisation has been plagued by allegations of bribery for decades – but particularly since awarding the 2018 and 2022 World Cup tournaments to Russia and Qatar.
The decision is still controversial almost five years later – at least eight members of that executive committee have since resigned or been removed.
Suspicions of vote-buying were so strong that Fifa appointed an independent investigator, Michael J Garcia, to look into the process.
Fifa hasn't published Mr Garcia's report, which was completed last Autumn.
The report found wrongdoing on the part of the Qatari and Russian bid committees, but Fifa's ethics judge ruled this wasn't enough to question the whole process.
In December Mr Garcia resigned from his role as investigator in protest of the organisation's handling of his report.
A law enforcement official was quoted as saying: "We're struck by just how long this went on for and how it touched nearly every part of what FIFA did.
"It just seemed to permeate every element of the federation and was just their way of doing business.
"It seems like this corruption was institutionalised."

FIFA is holding a presidential election on Friday, when Sepp Blatter has been widely tipped to stay in the job.
Blatter isn't understood to be one of the officials charged.
A Fifa spokesperson said: "We have seen the media reports and are seeking clarity in this matter. We will make no further comment at this stage."
Blatter will go head-to-head against Prince Ali bin al-Hussein of Jordan in Friday's presidential election, when he will be seeking a fifth term in the post.
Prince Ali said the arrests were "a sad day for football".
He and his advisors are meeting this morning to discuss the impact of the charges on the upcoming vote.
The Swiss Federal Office of Justice (FOJ) said: "The six soccer functionaries were arrested today in Zurich by the Zurich Cantonal Police.
"The FOJ's arrest warrants were issued to further request by the US authorities.
"The US Attorney's Office for the Eastern District of New York is investigating these individuals on suspicion of the acceptance of bribes and kick-backs between the early 1990s and the present day.

"The bribery suspects – representatives of sports media and sports promotion firms – are alleged to have been involved in schemes to make payments to the soccer functionaries – delegates of Fifa and other functionaries of Fifa sub-organisations – totalling more than 100million US dollars.
"In return, it is believed that they received media, marketing and sponsorship rights in connection with soccer tournaments in Latin America.
"According to the US request, these crimes were agreed and prepared in the US and payments were carried out via US banks."
Officials said that the suspects could be deported immediately.

They added: "The Zurich Cantonal Police will question the detainees today on behalf of the FOJ regarding the US request for their arrest.
"A simplified procedure will apply for wanted persons who agree to their immediate extradition. The FOJ can immediately approve their extradition to the US and order its execution.
"However if a wanted person opposes their extradition the FOJ will invite the US to submit a formal extradition request within the deadline of 40 days specified in the bilateral extradition treaty."
The US attorney general Loretta Lynch is due to hold a news conference later today.

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