FIFA im­poses life ban on for­mer CONCACAF of­fi­cial Sanz

The Korea Times - - SPORTS -

ZURICH (AP) — FIFA has im­posed a life ban for bribery on En­rique Sanz, the for­mer gen­eral sec­re­tary of North Amer­i­can soc­cer body CONCACAF.

Sanz was eas­ily iden­ti­fied as an un­named co-con­spir­a­tor in U.S. Depart­ment of Jus­tice doc­u­ments in 2015 — No. 4 in the orig­i­nal in­dict­ment in May that year, and No. 3 in a su­per­sed­ing in­dict­ment un­sealed that De­cem­ber.

Amer­i­can fed­eral pros­e­cu­tors al­leged that he ar­ranged and took bribes linked to com­mer­cial deals for in­ter­na­tional soc­cer com­pe­ti­tions with other of­fi­cials linked to FIFA. They in­cluded World Cup qual­i­fy­ing games and the 2016 Copa Amer­i­can cen­te­nary tour­na­ment.

Though Sanz was not pub­licly charged or sen­tenced, pros­e­cu­tors al­leged he also took part in bribery schemes work­ing for sports agency Traf­fic USA be­fore join­ing CONCACAF in 2012.

The in­dict­ment said he ob­tained an “ex­pen­sive paint­ing from an art gallery in New York” as a bribe while work­ing for Jef­frey Webb, then CONCACFA’s leader and a FIFA vice pres­i­dent. Webb, a banker from the Cay­man Is­lands, pleaded guilty to var­i­ous fi­nan­cial crimes and is await­ing sen­tence.

FIFA said its ethics judges charged Sanz with bribery only dur­ing his 2012-15 work with CONCACAF. He was found guilty and fined 100,000 Swiss francs ($100,000).

In 2014, the Colom­bia-born of­fi­cial took a leave of ab­sence from CONCACAF, which also cov­ers Cen­tral Amer­ica and the Caribbean, while be­ing treated for leukemia.

Sanz was sus­pended by FIFA’s ethics com­mit­tee when the sprawl­ing Amer­i­can in­ves­ti­ga­tion was un­sealed in May 2015, and he was fired by CONCACAF weeks later.

En­rique Sanz

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