Zurich: Banned former FIFA president Sepp Blatter and his chief lieutenants were under fresh investigation over alleged illicit salaries and bonuses totalling USD 80 million, FIFA’s ethics committee said.
Football’s scandal-plagued ruling body said in June that Blatter, Jerome Valcke and Markus Kattner had skimmed off the eight-figure sum in “a coordinated effort” to “enrich themselves” between 2011 and 2015. It says it has passed on details to the Swiss police, who along with US authorities are pursuing dozens of former football bosses over widespread corruption at the highest levels of the game.
In a statement, the investigatory chamber of FIFA’s ethics committee announced yesterday it had now opened “formal proceedings” against the three men, who it suspects of bribery, conflict of interest and corruption. Once the most powerful man in football, Blatter is already serving a six-year ban from football over ethics violations relating to a suspect USD 2 million payment he authorised in 2011 to former UEFA boss Michel Platini.
Valcke was banned for 12 years, reduced to 10 on appeal, over misconduct regarding television deals and 2014 World Cup ticket sales. Kattner, who briefly succeeded Valcke as Blatter’s right-hand man, was fired in May over “breaches” involving millions of dollars.