Cit­i­group sum­moned in FIFA probe

The Pak Banker - - FRONT PAGE -

Cit­i­group Inc said it re­ceived a subpoena from the US At­tor­ney for the East­ern District of New York re­gard­ing the bank's pos­si­ble role in bribes paid to in­ter­na­tional soc­cer of­fi­cials. The govern­ment is seek­ing in­for­ma­tion on bank­ing re­la­tion­ships and trans­ac­tions tied to FIFA, global soc­cer's gov­ern­ing body, New York-based Cit­i­group said Fri­day in its an­nual reg­u­la­tory fil­ing with the Se­cu­ri­ties and Ex­change Com­mis­sion.

FIFA is un­der in­ves­ti­ga­tion by U.S. and Swiss au­thor­i­ties for al­leged bribery and cor­rup­tion in the award­ing of the 2018 and 2022 World Cups to Rus­sia and Qatar. Al­most 40 peo­ple, in­clud­ing a dozen FIFA of­fi­cials, have been ar­rested in con­nec­tion with cor­rup­tion in soc­cer.

The US al­leged in a May in­dict­ment of FIFA of­fi­cials that money from bribery schemes passed through banks in­clud­ing Cit­i­group, JPMor­gan Chase & Co. and Wa­chovia Bank, now a unit of Wells Fargo & Co.

The in­dict­ment doesn't ac­cuse the banks of wrong­do­ing or in­di­cate whether trans­fers in the FIFA case should have raised alarms, or say whether the banks alerted the govern­ment to the trans­ac­tions. On Fri­day, FIFA elected Gianni In­fantino as its first new pres­i­dent since Joseph 'Sepp' Blat­ter took of­fice in 1988. In­fantino, 45, will help set pri­or­i­ties for one of sport's most pow­er­ful bod­ies and over­see the World Cup as it tries to emerge from the scan­dal.

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