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Attorney General Lynch: New evidence and more charges in FIFA graft case

U.S. Attorney General Loretta Lynch said Monday the investigation into graft at FIFA has expanded and she anticipates “pursuing additional charges against individuals and entities.”

She was speaking at a press conference in Zurich, where she appeared with her Swiss counterpart, Michael Lauber.

In May, the DOJ indicted 14 individuals on allegations of bribery and corruption “within the inner workings of the world’s most popular sport,” Lynch said. 

Since then, 13 of the 14 defendants charged have been arrested by either U.S. or foreign authorities. 

Three defendants are currently in the United States and have been arraigned in federal court in Brooklyn. 

Ten others are currently pending extradition in Switzerland and in three other countries.

Lynch said she couldn’t comment on the individual defendants to ensure they’re “treated fairly and impartially, both while pending extradition abroad and awaiting trial in the United States.”

But apart from the pending indictments, Lynch said, the DOJ investigation “remains active and ongoing, and has in fact expanded since May.”

The scope of the investigation isn’t limited and the DOJ is “following the evidence where it leads.”

“I am grateful for the significant cooperation and substantial evidence that we have received from all quarters,” she said. “Based upon that cooperation and new evidence, we anticipate pursuing additional charges against individuals and entities.”

Four defendants have already pleaded guilty in the U.S. case.

American Chuck Blazer, a former member of FIFA’s executive committee, admitted taking a bribe in exchange for votes to award the World Cup to South Africa in 2010.

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Richard L. Cassin is the publisher and editor of the FCPA Blog. He can be contacted here.

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