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Corruption charges Extradited FIFA official pleads not guilty

(Keystone)


The first FIFA official to be extradited to the United States following sweeping arrests in Zurich has pled not guilty to charges of soliciting bribes. 

Jeffrey Webb, the former ex-president of the regional FIFA organisation Concacaf, was one of seven world football officials arrested at the Hotel Baur au Lac in May. On Saturday, he agreed to a deal which has him released from custody on a $10 million bail. However, he has been placed under house arrest with FBI supervision and must surrender his passports.

Webb, a 50-year-old from the Cayman Islands, is among nine soccer officials and five marketing executives charged by the U.S. Justice Department for allegedly exploiting the sport for their own gain through bribes of more than $150 million over 24 years. The Swiss Justice Department is conducting a parallel inquiry into the activities of FIFA officials in Switzerland, where the world football governing body is headquartered. 

Read the full US JusticeDepartment indictment against Webb and 13 other FIFA officials here. external link

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Webb faces charges of racketeering conspiracy, wire fraud and money laundering. He has also been provisionally banned from his posts at FIFA and CONCACAF. The Justice Department indictment states that he used his position to solicit bribes from sports marketing companies in exchange for commercial rights to football matches. 

His next court appearance has been scheduled for August 17.

swissinfo.ch and agencies

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