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Sepp Blatter & Michel Platini Indicted on Fraud Charges


On Tuesday, November 2nd, 2021 the former FIFA president, Sepp Blatter, and the former president of UEFA, Michel Platini, were formally charged with fraud as well as other criminal offences by Swiss federal prosecutors following a 6 – year investigation of an extremely controversial payment of $2 million.

The 85-year-old Blatter and the 66-year-old Platini face a federal trial within the upcoming months at a federal criminal court located in Bellinzona, Switzerland. This federal Swiss court case originated in September of 2015 taking down Blatter immediately and ahead of schedule as the president of FIFA.

It also ended the ex-UEFA president Platini’s campaign to succeed his former mentor in Blatter. If found guilty these two individuals could be sentenced to time in prison for several years.

This Swiss criminal court case centers on Platini’s written documented request to FIFA in January of 2011 to be paid back-dated additional salary for his work as a presidential adviser during Blatter’s first term which spanned from 1998 to 2002. In turn Blatter authorized this payment to be made from FIFA to Platini within only a matter of weeks’ time. Blatter was preparing for and planning his campaign for reelection in a highly–contested battle versus his opponent, Mohamed bin Hammam of Qatar, in which Platini’s influence with the large pool of European voters would be a major contributing factor in the election.

Both Platini as well as Sepp Blatter have been denying these allegations and any other wrong-doings for a long time now. They both also cited a verbal agreement the two indicted parties had made with one another for the money to be paid for currently now over approximately 20-years-ago.

Blatter has been charged in Switzerland with multiple offenses including fraud, mismanagement, misappropriation of FIFA funds, and the forgery of an official document. Platini has been charged with fraud, misappropriation, forgery, and for acting as an accomplice to Blatter’s alleged mismanagement. Trial for these two indicted and charged former high-powered executives is scheduled to begin sometime over the next few months as both the Swiss federal prosecutors as well as the defense for Blatter and Platini prepare for an intense battle in court over these serious criminal offenses that could potentially lead to prison time.

Media Statements

This payment damaged FIFA’s assets and unlawfully enriched Platini,” says Swiss federal prosecutors in a recently released statement.

“The evidence gathered by the (attorney general’s office) has corroborated that this payment to Platini was made without a legal basis,” Swiss federal prosecutors proclaimed.

I view the proceedings at the federal criminal court with optimism – and hope that, with this, this story will come to an end and all the facts will be worked through cleanly,” the former FIFA official Sepp Blatter explained in his defense via a statement that he just released.

Sources:

Dunbar, Graham. “Sepp Blatter, Platini indicted for fraud in Switzerland”. The Associated Press. November 2, 2021.

The Associated Press News Services. “Former FIFA president Sepp Blatter, ex-UEFA president Michel Platini indicted on fraud charges”. ESPN. November 2, 2021.





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