Ethics committee report suggests Hammam did cheat- 23 Jun 2011 00:00:00
A secret report by FIFA’s ethics committee suggests that the presidential candidate for football’s governing body, Mohammed bin Hammam, did try to bribe officials during his campaign to defeat long-standing chief Sepp Blatter.
The report, which has been obtained by Britain’s Press Association, says that there was ‘comprehensive, convincing and overwhelming’ evidence against Bin Hammam, the head of the Asian Football Confederation.
It also says that former FIFA vice-president Jack Warner, who quit football on Monday, was ‘an accessory to corruption’.
After Warner’s announcement earlier this week, FIFA dropped all investigations into 68-year old, adding that ‘the presumption of innocence is maintained’.
The 17-page report was faxed to Warner on 14th June - three days later, he informed the governing body he was quitting.
Bin Hammam withdrew as a candidate against Blatter on the morning of his ethics committee hearing on 29th May, and both Bin Hammam and Warner have consistently denied any wrongdoing.
The report explains that there is compelling evidence that both men arranged a special meeting of the 25 members of the Caribbean Football Union on 10th and 11th May in Trinidad and cash gifts were handed over.
The report also includes statements from witnesses, described as ‘credible’, which said CFU members were handed individual envelopes - each containing $40,000.
The ethics committee report said: ‘The committee is also of the opinion that the respective money gifts can probably only be explained if they are associated with the FIFA presidential elections of 1st June 2011’.
‘Therefore it appears rather compelling to consider the actions of Mr Bin Hammam constitute prima facie an act of bribery, or at least an attempt to commit bribery’.