Author Topic: Fifa crisis: Australian police agree to look into $500,000 paid to Jack Warner  (Read 818 times)

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Offline mayya

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Fifa crisis: Australian police agree to look into $500,000 paid to Jack Warner

Australian federal police confirms it has been asked to investigate the payment to the former soccer powerbroker

 Police stand guard as an ambulance leaves the state prison in Port-of-Spain on Thursday. According to local media Jack Warner left jail in Trinidad and Tobago via ambulance Photograph: Andrea de Silva/ReutersReuters

Friday 29 May 2015 01.38 BSTLast modified on Friday 29 May 201501.39 BST
Australian police may investigate a payment of $500,000 by Football Federation Australia (FFA) to Jack Warner after the former soccer powerbroker was arrested in a sweeping corruption probe launched by US authorities this week.

Australia’s national soccer governing body claimed the payment was made as part of “mandatory” Fifa bidding criteria during the country’s failed bid for the 2022World Cup but was misappropriated by Warner.
Bonita Mersiades, a former senior member of Australia’s bid team, and the independent senator Nick Xenophon had written to the Australian federal police(AFP) asking it to investigate the payment, the AFP said.

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“The AFP can confirm it has been contacted ... and asked to provide advice in relation to this matter,” it said on Friday. “The AFP will assess the letters and provide advice in due course.”

The FFA, whose senior management is in Zurich for the Fifa congress, was not available for comment.
However, it has repeatedly denied any wrongdoing in its World Cup bid and said the 2010 payment was intended to fund a feasibility study for a “centre of excellence” project in the Caribbean.
A 2013 investigation by Concacaf, the soccer governing body for North America, Central America and the Caribbean, said the payment was misappropriated by Warner, a former president of Concacaf.
Warner resigned from his soccer roles in 2011 amid corruption allegations but was among more than a dozen soccer, media and promotions officials indicted by US authorities this week.
The US Justice Department has alleged he solicited $10m in bribes from the South African government to host the 2010 World Cup. Warner denied the allegations and was released on bail after a court appearance in Port of Spain.

The FFA said last year that it had cooperated with Michael Garcia, Fifa’s appointed investigator into the 2018 and 2022 World Cup bids, regarding the payment and reported it to the Australian government.
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Australia’s sports ministry referred queries about the bid to the FFA.

Mersiades left Australia’s bid team a year before the World Cup vote, later citing personal differences and discomfort with the team’s strategy of using highly paid consultants to influence Fifa members.
She was one of two prominent whistleblowers who cooperated with Garcia, but her evidence was largely discredited in a summary of his investigation released by Fifa’s ethics judge, Hans-Joachim Eckert, last year.
Xenophon, a long-time critic of Fifa and Australia’s failed bid, urged the federal government to denounce the Fifa president, Sepp Blatter, and request a fresh vote for the 2022 World Cup.

Eckert’s summary found some wrongdoing committed by teams bidding for the 2018 and 2022 World Cups but not enough to reopen the bidding process. Garcia subsequently quit his role as investigator, saying his report had been misrepresented.