Sports & Corruption | Scraping the Sports Industry’s wrongdoings in Corruption, Bribes, and Bidding & How it has been Investigated?

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Corruption is so hackneyed nowadays, it is not a bothered anymore. We had read innumerable cacophonies of corruption in newspapers and TV, it has become old news to people. But, for the sports fans who literally follow blindly to the sports, it is disheartening and a breach of trust.

Retrograding in history of sports,  from the ancient Olympic Games where athletes were accepting bribes to lose the competition, to the most recent Russian Olympic Team doping scandal, to Calciopoli, and to Football Leaks with the revealing of suspicious financial transactions in European football, corruption is evolving into a global public policy issue.

Sports is a multi-billion dollar business and thus a remunerative one which makes it prone to corruption. The compelling aspect of corruption in sports is that it is multifaceted and manifested in many ways.

Qatar Scandalous Selection in FIFA 2022:

With the disclosure of the Fédération Internationale de Football Association (FIFA) corruption scandal in May 2015, the integrity of international sports organizations was publicly contaminated.

FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022| Qatar FIFA Worldcup Bidding & Organizing with Stumbling blocks of Controversies, Corruption and Covid-19

In the 2015 FIFA corruption case of Qatar, Swiss officials, operating under the United States Department of Justice, arrested many senior FIFA officials in Zurich, Switzerland. They also cognized physical and electronic records from FIFA's main headquarters. The arrests continued in the United States where several FIFA officers were abducted and FIFA buildings were raided. The arrests were compelled on the information of at least a $150 million (USD) corruption and bribery scandal.

And on December, 16 more officials were charged following the arrest of two Fifa vice-presidents at the same hotel in Zurich. Former Brazil football federation chief Ricardo Teixeira was also involved in criminal schemes of over $200m (£132m) in bribes and kickbacks.

Fifa is the body obligated for running world football. Two of the most dominant person in football, Fifa President Sepp Blatter and Uefa President Michel Platini, were banned for 8 years from all football-related activities by Fifa's ethics committee.

Sepp Blatter and Michel Platini:

The Fifa ethics committee convicted Blatter and Platini as "abusive execution of power" of their positions.

They were found guilty of breaches surrounding a £1.3m ($2m) "disloyal payment" made to Michel Platini in 2011.

What were the other Major Corruption Events?

The FBI has been inspecting Fifa for the past 3 years. The investigation was firstly triggered by the bidding process for the Russia 2018 and Qatar 2022 World Cups but was extended to look back at Fifa's dealings over the past 20 years.

The cutthroat research by the FBI emerged when the corruption was structured in the US because of the use of US banks to transfer money appears to be key to the investigation.

World football's government has been in confusion for several months, following numerous allegations of corruption.

Lastly, Seven Fifa officials were arrested at a Zurich hotel.

US authorities have charged 39 football officials & sports business executives with more than £134m ($200m) in bribes for football television and marketing deals.

Swiss prosecutor had also taken down the investigating Fifa's management as well as the awards of the 2018 and 2022 World Cups to Russia and Qatar.

Charles Blazer as a Whistleblower:

A pivotal figure was Charles Blazer, former general secretary of the Caribbean Association Football (Concacaf), who is cooperating with US prosecutors was the central figure behind the Fifa corruption scandal, which led to the eventual declination of the organization’s president, Sepp Blatter.

But the ex-Fifa executive-turned-whistleblower was also known for leading an eccentric, and often lavish, lifestyle, with reports he had a separate Manhattan flat for his cats and a parrot frequently seen on his shoulder.

Charles-Chuck’s has said that between 2004 and 2011:

  • Charles Blazer and others on the Fifa executive committee agreed to accept bribes in the selection of South Africa as the host of the 2010 World Cup.
  • One of his co-member acquired a bribe in Morocco for its bid to host the 1998 tournament, which was eventually awarded to France.
  • Charles Blazer and others had accepted bribes which were linked with broadcast and other rights to the Concacaf Gold Cup tournament in 1996, 1998, 2000, 2002 and 2003

Jack Warner- A former Vice-President of FIFA was involved in Corruption:

Much consideration was focused on a $10m deal that US prosecutors say was a bribe to secure the 2010 World Cup for South Africa.

An email obtained by a South African newspaper appears to show that the South African President, Thabo Mbeki, and Mr. Sepp Blatter agreed to the deal. In the email, Fifa Secretary Jerome Valcke wrote to a South African minister asking when the transfer could be made and saying that both Mr. Sepp Blatter and Mr. Thabo Mbeki had discussed the matter previously.

There were three wire transfers by Fifa:

In the three transactions which were on 4 January, 1 February, and 10 March 2008, the total fund amount was $10m (£6.5m) from Fifa accounts were received into Concacaf accounts controlled by Jack Warner.

US prosecutors contemplated that the money was mostly paid back to Mr. Jack Warner in local currency.

Jack Warner was one of 14 people charged by US prosecutors for alleged corruption at Fifa.

How much Money was involved in Corruption?

Fifa makes nearly all of its income from the World Cup.

However, tournament hosted by Brazil was costed around $4bn, and yet Fifa made more than $2bn from the tournament via sponsors, the sale of broadcasting rights, and merchandising.

The costs of the next World Cup is expected to be: Qatar 2022 is reported to be costing above $6bn.

In Conclusion,

The World Cup is the most-watched sporting event in the world, larger and trusted even than the Olympics. It contributes billions of dollars in revenue from corporate sponsors, broadcasting rights, and merchandising these arrests and investigations cast doubt over the transparency and honesty for the procedure of assigning World Cup tournaments, electing its president, and the administration of funds, including those earmarked for improving football facilities in some of Fifa's poorer members.



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