Zurich’s Joseph “Sepp” Blatter, recently reelected President of the Fédération Internationale de Football Association (FIFA), will be leaving that position in a few months — if he is not arrested first. On Thursday, investigators from the Swiss Office of the Attorney General (OAG) quietly initiated criminal proceedings against Herr Blatter on suspicion of criminal mismanagement under Articles 158 and 138 of the Swiss Criminal Code. On Friday they surprised him at FIFA HQ, interrogating him and other top soccer execs, looking into the specifics of the 2005 TV rights deal Herr Blatter cut with Caribbean football chief Jack Warner and his $2 million payoff to underling Michel Platini in 2011.
Herr Blatter has ruled the international sports empire since 1998 and has helped FIFA bring the lucrative World Cup matches to places like Russia and
the North Pole Qatar. His resignation followed news that Herr Blatter’s top assistant, Jérôme Valcke, was involved in a questionable $10 million money transfer.
“Sepp Blatter, FIFA President, Faces Criminal Investigation in Switzerland,” Sam Borden, New York Times
“Sepp Blatter under criminal investigation by Swiss officials over ‘disloyal payment’ to Michel Platini – as it happened,” Luke Brown, Alan Tyers, and David Millward, The Telegraph
“Blatter, Platini Deny Misdeeds But Risk Bans Amid FIFA’s Internal Ethics Probe,” Joshua Robinson and Matthew Futterman, Wall Street Journal
“Coca-Cola, Visa, McDonald’s and Anheuser-Busch Call on FIFA’s Sepp Blatter to Resign,” Andrew Das, New York Times
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Image (“FIFA’s Red Card”) by Mike Licht. Download a copy here. Creative Commons license; credit Mike Licht, NotionsCapital.com
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