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Formal probe


Blatter among trio investigated for ‘bogus FIFA bonuses’


FIFA has opened formal investigations against former President Sepp Blatter, ex-Secretary General Jérôme Valcke and fired Finance Director Markus Kattner, with all three suspected of having enriched themselves with bogus bonuses.

The probe follows a damning report earlier this year by law firm Quinn Emanuel which accused top officials of colluding to help themselves to CHF79 million ($80 million) worth of corrupt pay increases and bonus payments.

Blatter was stripped of his presidency last year and eventually banned from all football related activities for six years. He denies corruption allegations and his case is currently being adjudicated by the Court of Arbitration for Sport.

Kattner was fired as Finance Director and Deputy Secretary General in May after being accused of "breaches of his fiduciary responsibilities". Valcke was stripped of his post in January and handed a 12-year ban from football following his earlier suspension.

Blatter and Valcke have also attracted the attention of the Swiss Attorney General.

The investigatory chamber of FIFA’s ethics committee said on Friday that it was investigating all three on suspicion of bribery and corruption, conflict of interest for accepting gifts and for violation of “loyalty” under the general code of conduct. In addition, Kattner is accused of a breach of confidentiality.

If the investigatory chamber finds enough evidence it could recommend a formal hearing before the adjudicatory chamber of FIFA’s ethics committee.

Meanwhile, FIFA has handed its former Vice-President, and ex-President of CONCACAF, Jeffrey Webb, a lifetime ban from football and a CHF1 million fine.

Webb pleased guilty in the US last year to charges of racketeering, fraud and money laundering.


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