Former FIFA powerbroker Warner banned from soccer for life

Tue Sep 29, 2015 1:24pm EDT
 
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By Brian Homewood

ZURICH (Reuters) - Trinidadian Jack Warner, once one of the most powerful men in world soccer, has been banned from all football-related activities for life, the ethics committee of the global governing body FIFA said on Tuesday.

In the biggest corruption scandal to hit the sport, Warner and 13 other soccer officials and sports marketing executives were indicted in the United States on May 27 on bribery, money laundering and wire fraud charges involving more than $150 million in payments.

Warner was found to have committed "many and various acts of misconduct continuously and repeatedly during his time as an official in different high-ranking and influential positions at FIFA and CONCACAF," the ethics committee said.

CONCACAF is the governing body for soccer in North and Central America and the Caribbean, which Warner headed from 1990 to 2011. He also sat on FIFA's executive committee for 28 years.

"In his positions as a football official, he was a key player in schemes involving the offer, acceptance and receipt of undisclosed and illegal payments, as well as other money-making schemes," the committee said.

Warner accused FIFA, whose president Sepp Blatter was last week placed under criminal investigation by Swiss authorities, of trying to distract attention from its own problems.

"If FIFA wants to ban me for life without even a hearing, then so be it," he said in a statement.

"I do not believe, however, that this will serve as the distraction to the FIFA's present problems as the FIFA wishes it to be. Given what is happening in Zurich with Sepp Blatter, I guess that there is no such thing as a coincidence."   Continued...

 
Trinidad and Tobago's former National Security Minister and former FIFA Vice President, Jack Warner, gestures after leaving the offices of the Sunshine Newspaper which he owns, in Arouca, East Trinidad, in this file photo taken May 27, 2015.  Warner, once one of the most powerful men in world soccer, has been banned from all football-related activities for life, the ethics committee of the global governing body FIFA said on Tuesday.  REUTERS/Andrea De Silva/Files