Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Soccer as crooked as Wisconsin politics?

It's maybe not the biggest sports story in America today, but it sure is in the rest of the world. 14 people associated with FIFA have been arrested, and will be sent to federal court to face numerous charges, including racketeering, money-laundering, and wire fraud. FIFA allegedly took pay-play to obscene levels when it came to choosing the sites of its major events, with kickbacks and related corruption.
The Justice Department, F.B.I. and I.R.S. described soccer’s governing body in terms normally reserved for Mafia families and drug cartels, saying that top officials treated FIFA business decisions as chits to be traded for personal wealth. One soccer official took in more than $10 million in bribes, Attorney General Loretta E. Lynch said..

Some of the payments were funneled through intricate schemes. After committing fraud, bribery and money laundering, prosecutors wrote, defendants covered up those payments in various ways: using fake consulting contracts to funnel illegal payments; sending money through associates working in banking or currency dealing; creating shell companies in tax havens; hiding foreign bank accounts; using safe deposit boxes; and “bulk cash smuggling.”

And some payments were old-fashioned bribes, like one involving South Africa’s bid for the 2010 World Cup. Mr. Warner, then a member of the FIFA executive committee, directed an associate to fly to Paris, accept a briefcase full of cash in $10,000 stacks from a South African bid committee member in a hotel room, and return the briefcase to Mr. Warner in Trinidad.

Later, a Moroccan bid committee member offered Mr. Warner $1 million in exchange for his vote, but that person was outmaneuvered: the South African bid committee had arranged a $10 million bribe in exchange for the votes of Mr. Warner and two co-conspirators on South Africa’s behalf. All three ultimately voted for South Africa, the indictment says.
Back in Wisconsin, Scott Walker and his donors look at that setup and ask "Why didn't you just call it free speech? That's what we do! Then we can claim it's not money-laundering or racketeering!"

And who was all over the corruption of FIFA a year ago? British comedian John Oliver, who nailed just how scummy FIFA President Sepp Blatter and his organization was, and how much of a controlling scam FIFA runs during the World Cup. This is up to and including superseding local laws and literally allowing people to be worked to death!

Yes, the language is NSFW, but after watching that segment and seeing the allegations in the charges that just came down on FIFA officials and their associates, I'd say John might have been going light on them.

1 comment:

  1. [Corruption: first, WI trees were quickly taken as they had no voice; nor did fish, cranes, eagles or wolves; then the water was destroyed and once trees & wildlife were gone, more oil was spilled and open pit mines, CAFOs, refineries moved in and our home state was taken right out from under us.