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Costa Rica’s soccer federation starts inquiry after former chief admits to theft and accepting bribes

LADB Article ID: 80162
Category/Department: Costa Rica
Date: 2016-12-08
By: George Rodríguez

Costa Rica was entangled in the scandal involving the International Federation of Association Football (FIFA) in May 2015, when the country’s top soccer authority, Eduardo Li, was arrested in Switzerland on charges of corruption, along with other world soccer officials Last October, after his extradition to the US, Li admitted before a New York court that he had accepted bribes regarding the Costa Rican national soccer team and had stolen money earmarked for organizing the Under-17 Women’s World Cup, the first world-class soccer event ever held in Central America. Li had been about to take office as FIFA’s vice president when he was arrested. A year after the games, Li, who as president of the Federación Costarricense de Fútbol (Costa Rican Soccer Federation, FEDEFÚTBOL) was responsible for organizing the event, was arrested in the devastating corruption scandal that rocked FIFA. Among other illegal actions he has admitted to having committed, Li appropriated US$90,000 that FIFA transferred to FEDEFÚTBOL in support of the young women’s championship.

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