THE Court of Arbitration for Sport, CAS, has upheld the six-year ban of Sepp Blatter, former FIFA president, from all football activities. In its written verdict, CAS said Blatter requested the annulment of the ban but did not request a reduced penalty. “In any event, the panel determined that the sanction imposed was not disproportionate.”
The Swiss was banned over ethics breaches as his 17 years as head of football’s world governing body ended in a corruption scandal in 2015. He was found to have made a £1.3 million disloyal payment to ex-UEFA boss Michel Platini.
Both deny wrongdoing. CAS described the payment as an undue gift with no contractual basis. Blatter said no other verdict could be expected. “I have to accept this decision. I have experienced much in my 41 years in FIFA. I mostly learned that you can win in sport, but you can also lose.”
FIFA suspended Blatter and former France international Platini for eight years in December, but the bans were reduced to six years by its appeals committee. In May, CAS reduced Platini’s ban to four years after he appealed. The 61-year-old had sought to get the punishment overturned, but a three-man panel said it “was not convinced by the legitimacy” of the payment Blatter made to him in 2011.
Both men said it was for consultancy work Platini had done for Blatter between 1998 and 2002, and they had a “gentleman’s agreement” on when the balance would be settled.
The payment is also being looked into by Swiss prosecutors.
— Dec 19, 2016 @ 01:00 GMT