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FIFA Scandal Highlights Caribbean’s Political Culture of Corruption

LADB Article ID: 79697
Category/Department: Region
Date: 2015-07-09
By: Gregory Scruggs

The morning raid in May by Swiss police on a Zurich luxury hotel to arrest officials from FIFA, the world governing body of soccer, has had global repercussions for the global game. Among the home regions of those implicated in the scandal, which consists of alleged bribery and vote buying for the awarding of several World Cup bids, the Caribbean has been thrust into a negative spotlight. Former top officials from CONCACAF, the regional governing body of soccer for North America, South America, and the Caribbean, have been charged with racketeering and bribery by the US, which is seeking their extradition. Jeffrey Webb of the Cayman Islands and Jack Warner of Trinidad and Tobago were, respectively, the current and former presidents of CONCACAF, a position that made them vice presidents of FIFA. Webb remains in a Swiss jail while fighting extradition to the US, a process that could take months. Warner was placed on "red notice" by Interpol and turned himself in to Trinidadian authorities. It is widely expected that the US government will serve him with extradition papers.

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