Ex-FIFA president Blatter, footballer Platini cleared of fraud

Ex-FIFA president Blatter, footballer Platini cleared of fraud in Swiss trial : The former FIFA president Sepp Blatter and France footballing legend Michel Platini were both cleared of corruption allegations by an Swiss tribunal on the Friday following seven years of investigation in which they were kicked out of the game.

A judge found that the duo’s statement of a “gentlemen’s agreement to allow FIFA in order to give Platini two millions Swiss dollars ($2.05 millions) for consulting services was credible and there were serious doubts in the prosecution’s assertion that it was a fraud.

Ex-FIFA president Blatter, footballer Platini cleared of fraud

In the end, Blatter who was in charge of FIFA during 17 seasons and was cleared of any fraudulent activities through The Federal Criminal Court in the southern city of Bellinzona. Platini was a former France national manager and captain of the team was also cleared of fraud.

The two, who were among the most powerful players in soccer worldwide, had dismissed the allegations against them. Swiss federal prosecutors stated they would review the verdict written before making a decision on which appeal to file.

“I have always said my conscience is clear,” a sighing, frail Blatter spoke to reporters outside the courtroom.

“Naturally nobody’s perfect, but in the case of my job, my work, 44 years working at FIFA, for me it is so important that this case has been settled at the highest Swiss level,” the 86-year old said.

Platini at 67 years old also spoke of his joy and happiness, claiming that the accusations had transformed him from legends of world soccer to the status of a “devil”.

“I want to express my happiness for all my loved ones that justice has finally been done after seven years of lies and manipulation,” Platini declared.

“The truth has come to light,” the politician said. “I kept saying it: my fight is a fight against injustice.”

Prosecutors have been accused Swiss nationals Blatter as well as Platini of arranging illegally to get FIFA to make to the Frenchman 2 millions Swiss Francs ($2.06 Million) in the year 2011.

The scandal led to Blatter quit his post as FIFA president with a shambles and ruined Platini’s chances of becoming his successor when he was barred from playing football after the scandal was exposed.

Blatter claimed that the two-million dollars in francs was made as a result of the terms of a “gentlemen’s agreement” between the two when he asked Platini to serve as his technical advisor in 1998.

Ex-FIFA president Blatter, footballer Platini

Platini was consultant between 1998 and 2002, earning an annual salary that was 300,000 Swiss francs. the amount being increased to 1 million per year after.

The judge in charge, Josephine Contu Albrizio, stated that a verbal agreement with Blatter and Platini was plausible, as did the Frenchman’s estimation of his market value as 1 million per year because of his position as a player.

It also seemed unlikely that Platini was working in accordance with a written contract which paid the minuscule amount, as the judge informed the court.

It was also plausible that Platini was seeking the additional pay only in 2010, as he didn’t need the money at the time according to her statement.

The cash payment was revealed in the wake of an enormous investigation conducted by the U.S. Department of Justice into fraud, bribery and money laundering at FIFA in 2015. The investigation caused Blatter’s resignation.

They were both banned from playing soccer for eight years for the amount they were paid, however their bans were later reduced.

Platini He also was fired as UEFA president due to the ban, claimed that the incident was an intentional attempt to block his plan to be FIFA president in 2015.

The former general secretary of UEFA, Gianni Infantino, joined his name into FIFA race and won the race in the year 2016.

The pair of Blatter or Platini would like to discuss Infantino however Blatter confirmed that he will take part in the next World Cup tournament which FIFA controversially gave to Qatar.

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