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FIFA Opens Bribery and Corruption Case Against Sepp Blatter and Two Others

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FIFA has opened a formal investigation into Sepp Blatter, Jerome Valcke and Markus Kattner over bribery and corruption allegations

Zurich, Switzerland – The FIFA ethics committee said Friday it has opened a formal bribery case against former president Sepp Blatter, ex-general secretary Jerome Valcke and former finance chief Marcus Kattner, FIFA has confirmed.

World football’s governing body revealed in June, after finance director Kattner was fired, that he, Blatter and Valcke agreed to pay themselves bonuses worth tens of millions of dollars.

Both Blatter and Valcke are banned from football-related activities following breaches of FIFA’s code of ethics. Blatter is suspended for six years, while Valcke is serving a 10-year ban.

FIFA’s ethics committee said “The investigatory chamber will investigate possible violations of art. 13 (General rules of conduct), art. 15 (Loyalty), art. 19 (Conflicts of interest), art. 20 (Offering and accepting gifts and other benefits) and art. 21 (Bribery and corruption) of the FIFA Code of Ethics (FCE) in the context of salaries and bonuses paid to Mr Blatter, Mr Valcke and Mr Kattner as well as other provisions included in the contracts of these three individuals.”

The 80-year-old Blatter is awaiting the verdict from a Court of Arbitration for Sport panel in his appeal against a six-year ban for conflict of interest. That case relates to a $2 million payment he authorized in 2011 for Michel Platini, the former UEFA president who also served as a FIFA vice president.

Valcke’s 12-year ethics ban for various charges of financial misconduct and destroying evidence was later reduced to 10 years on appeal. The French former TV personality can pursue a further appeal at CAS.

All three men have previously denied wrongdoing.