Sepp Blatter loses appeal against 6-year FIFA ban

ALAIN GROSCLAUDE

The Court of Arbitration for Sport rejected an appeal of a six-year ban for unethical conduct against former FIFA president Sepp Blatter.

He will remain banned from taking part in any football-related activity for six years.

Blatter was accused of authorizing a $2 million payment to former UEFA president Michel Platini in 2011. Blatter has denied wrongdoing and said he would accept whatever punishment the CAS handed out.

Blatter, who was FIFA's boss for 17 years before resigning in 2015, has said the payment was made for consultancy work.

In its ruling, the CAS said that Blatter unlawfully awarded contributions to Platini under the FIFA Executive Committee retirement scheme “which also amounted to an undue gift.”

Blatter and Platini were banned for eight years by soccer's governing body in December 2015, but was reduced to six years by FIFA's appeals panel. In May, Platini had his ban cut by another two years by CAS.

Blatter, 80, was elected for a fifth term by FIFA but resigned in June 2015 after a total of 14 people were indicted and charged with racketeering, wire fraud and money laundering conspiracies by the United States Justice Department, which accused FIFA of decades of “rampant, systemic, and deep-rooted” corruption by members of world soccer's governing body.

Authorities in Switzerland have opened separate criminal proceedings into FIFA's bid process for the 2018 and 2022 World Cups, which were won by Russia and Qatar, respectively.

Scooby Axson

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