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Football corruption Platini loses appeal over 90-day FIFA ban

Michel Platini leaves a hearing at the Lausanne-based Court of Arbitration for Sport

(Keystone)

Michel Platini, the French president of European football’s governing body UEFA, has lost his appeal at the Court to Arbitration for Sport (CAS) to lift a 90-day ban by FIFA, world football’s governing body. 

The Lausanne-based court said on Friday its three-man panel of judges was unanimous in ruling against the FIFA presidential hopeful. 

The 90-day ban “does not cause irreparable harm to Michel Platini at this point in time”, the court said in a statement. 

Platini hoped to be allowed to attend the 2016 European Championship draw in Paris on Saturday and resume campaigning ahead of the FIFA presidential election on February 26. 

He must also first pass an integrity check by corruption-plagued FIFA to be declared an official candidate. 

Still, CAS ordered the FIFA ethics committee to work quickly on Platini’s case. The court said Platini’s provisional ban could not be extended by a further 45 days in January. 

Verbal agreement 

Platini’s full case will be heard by the FIFA ethics committee in Zurich on Friday and a verdict is expected days later. 

The case centres on FIFA President Sepp Blatter’s approval of $2 million (CHF1.98 million) of FIFA money that Platini received in 2011 as backdated salary. 

Blatter and Platini both deny wrongdoing but acknowledge there was only a verbal agreement which they say is valid under Swiss law. However, FIFA was not required to pay Platini when more than five years elapsed since the work was completed. 

The timing of the payment, which was not disclosed to the FIFA and UEFA executive committees, also raised suspicion. Platini was paid in February 2011, three months before a FIFA presidential election which Blatter won. 

Both men face sanctions for a range of potential FIFA Code of Ethics violations, including bribery, conflicts of interest and false accounting.

swissinfo.ch and agencies


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