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Probe widens UBS also under scrutiny over FIFA


Swiss banking giant UBS says it has received inquiries from authorities about its banking relationships with FIFA officials, just days after rival Credit Suisse made a similar announcement.

“UBS has, and reportedly numerous other financial institutions have, received inquiries from authorities concerning accounts relating to the Fédération Internationale de Football Association (FIFA) and other constituent soccer associations and related persons and entities,” UBS said in its third-quarter financial report on Tuesday, without giving further details. 

“UBS is cooperating with authorities in these inquiries.”

Football’s world governing body, based in Zurich, is currently embroiled in a massive corruption scandal. The arrest in May of seven football officials in Zurich on the eve of FIFA’s congress and the indictment of seven others on charges of racketeering, wire fraud and money laundering has led to a widening series of investigations in Switzerland, the United Kingdom and the United States.

Spreading scandal

The scandal spread in September, with the Swiss Attorney General opening criminal proceedings into FIFA President Sepp Blatter over a CHF2 million ($2 million) payment he made to European soccer chief Michel Platini.

Both men denied doing anything illegal but have been suspended by FIFA for 90 days.

Several banks, including Zurich-based Julius Baer, started internal investigations after the US Justice Department named them in the May indictment.

Credit Suisse said on October 30 that it was cooperating with United States and Swiss investigations into whether financial institutions allowed the processing of suspicious transactions, or failed to observe anti-money laundering laws in their dealings with FIFA. and agencies

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