FIFA Report Claims “Overwhelming” Evidence of Bin Hammam Bribery
June 23, 2011
A FIFA ethics committee report has claimed that there is “overwhelming” evidence that Mohamed Bin Hammam used bribery during his campaign to become president of world football’s governing body. The report also stated that former FIFA vice-president Jack Warner was “an accessory to corruption”.
Both 68-year-old Warner, from Trinidad & Tobago, and Qatar’s Bin Hammam, 62, were provisionally suspended on May 29. Warner resigned from FIFA on Monday, with FIFA dropping its investigation against him, stating that “the presumption of innocence is maintained”.
However, the full report by the ethics committee stated that there was “comprehensive, convincing and overwhelming” proof that Bin Hammam had offered bribes as part of his campaign, and that such actions had been facilitated by Warner. The report concluded that there was “compelling” evidence that Bin Hammam and Warner arranged a special meeting of the 25 members of the Caribbean Football Union on May 10-11 in Trinidad and that cash gifts of up to US$40,000 were handed over.
Warner’s evidence to the May 29 hearing was described as “mere self-serving declarations” and the report added that he “failed to provide the FIFA ethics committee with a plausible explanation”. Following the leak of the report, Bin Hammam responded in a statement: “There is nothing I can say more than I deny the allegations and insist that I have not done anything wrong during the special Congress at Trinidad.”
Warner has issued a statement claiming the report had been circulated by “pathologically mendacious” people within FIFA who would “stop at no length to destroy my legacy”. He added: “Let me once again reiterate for the sake of those with hidden agendas; I, Jack Warner, did not partake in the distribution of any cash gifts to my members.”