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FIFA official agrees to extradition

One of the seven FIFA officials detained in Zurich in May has agreed to be extradited to the United States, Switzerland’s Federal Office of Justice (FOJ) has confirmed.

The unnamed official was arrested on May 27 ahead of the FIFA Congress – having been among 14 men indicted for racketeering conspiracy and corruption by the United States’ Department of Justice (USDoJ).

The USDoJ identified FIFA vice-presidents Jeffrey Webb and Eugenio Figueredo, along with executive committee member Eduardo Li, development officer Julio Rocha, attache to the CONCACAF president Costas Takkas, CONMEBOL executive committee member Rafael Esquivel and FIFA organising committee member Jose Maria Marin as those arrested in Switzerland.

And a press release from the Swiss FOJ on Friday read: “One of the seven detained FIFA officials agreed yesterday afternoon to be extradited to the USA. The Federal Office of Justice (FOJ) was therefore able to approve his extradition immediately in a simplified procedure.

“As is customary, no details concerning when he will be handed over are to be disclosed for reasons of security and privacy. The person concerned wished not to be named at the moment.

“The FIFA official was arrested along with six other FIFA officials in Zurich on 27 May 2015 on the basis of arrest warrants from the USA and detained pending extradition.

“The US Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of New York accuses him of accepting bribes totalling millions of dollars in connection with the sale of marketing rights to various sports marketing firms and keeping the money for himself. The marketing rights in question pertain to the broadcast of qualifying matches for the soccer World Cup, regional soccer tournaments and continental soccer championships in North and South America.

“Such conduct was financially detrimental to two continental federations as well as various national associations.

“In a first hearing conducted by the Zurich Cantonal Police immediately after his arrest, the person concerned had contested his extradition to the USA. The FOJ therefore asked the USA to submit a formal extradition request, which it did on 1 July 2015.

“A hearing on this formal extradition request took place yesterday, and this time the person concerned agreed to be extradited to the USA.

“The FOJ was therefore able to approve his extradition immediately in a simplified procedure. According to the Swiss legislation on mutual assistance in criminal matters, the person concerned must be collected by a US police escort and taken to the USA within 10 days.”

Fri 10 Jul, 2015
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