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FIFA HQ searched under corruption probe

Swiss authorities have conducted another search at FIFA’s Zurich headquarters as part of their investigation into corruption at world football’s governing body.

In a statement, the Office of the Attorney General of Switzerland (OAG) confirmed documents and electronic data were seized on Thursday in relation to ongoing proceedings.

Last September, the OAG opened criminal proceedings against former FIFA president Sepp Blatter before doing likewise in March against the organisation’s ex-secretary general Jerome Valcke.

Blatter and Valcke are currently serving respective six and 12-year bans imposed by FIFA’s independent ethics committee but deny any wrongdoing.

The (OAG) statement read: “As part of the ongoing criminal investigations in the FIFA affair, the Office of the Attorney General of Switzerland carried out a search of FIFA’s headquarters on 2 June 2016, with the aim of confirming existing findings and obtaining further information.

“Documents and electronic data were seized and will now be examined to determine their relevance to the ongoing proceedings.

“The investigations still relate only to the persons named in earlier statements issued by the OAG and further persons unknown. As proceedings are ongoing, no further information can be given at present.”

The search did not relate to allegations made by Die Welt that Blatter’s successor Gianni Infantino asked for recordings of a council meeting held in Mexico City last month to be deleted.

The German newspaper claimed to have seen an internal email chain suggesting Infantino ordered the audio files to be destroyed.

In response to those allegations on Thursday, FIFA spokesperson Delia Fischer said: “The email exchange that makes mention of the deletion of audio files refers to a copy of the original audio file of the meeting that was improperly stored on a local drive.

“This mention does not refer to the officially archived audio file. That file exists and is properly saved at FIFA.”

FIFA did not respond when approached by Omnisport for comment on Thursday’s OAG raid.

Fri 3 Jun, 2016
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