FIFA ethics prosecutor Michael Garcia resigns, citing lack of leadership

0:46 | Planet Futbol
FIFA ethics investigator Michael Garcia resigns
Wednesday December 17th, 2014

FIFA ethics prosecutor Michael Garcia resigned from his position on Wednesday, citing a "lack of leadership" at the organization concerning its handling of his World Cup bid corruption investigation.

The news was first reported by the Associated Press.  

Garcia said in a statement that he initially felt the organization was making progress in combating corruption, but that progress stalled in recent months. 

For the first two years after my July 2012 appointment as independent Chairman of the FIFA Ethics Committee's Investigatory Chamber, I felt that the Ethics Committee was making real progress in advancing ethics enforcement at FIFA. In recent months, that changed.

Garcia has repeatedly criticized FIFA ethics judge Hans-Joachim Eckert's 42-page summary of Garcia's World Cup bid corruption report. The summary cleared Russia and Qatar of major wrongdoing after the two countries were controversially chosen to host the 2018 and 2022 World Cups.

In his statement, Garcia also claims FIFA president Sepp Blatter tried to open a disciplinary inquiry into Garcia in September. 

FIFA dismisses World Cup whistleblowers' complaints

Garcia then appealed Eckert's decision to close the investigation, saying Eckert's summary misconstrued the former FBI investigator's findings. Garcia elaborated on his reasons why he appealed in a statement released Wednesday

 The issues raised by Mr. Eckert's selection and omission of material from the Report, and his additional comments, went far beyond the initial transparency concerns. As my public statement at the time explained, the Eckert Decision contained "numerous materially incomplete and erroneous representations of facts and conclusions."

FIFA said on Tuesday that the appeal lodged by Garcia is not admissible.

Garcia had said he did not see Eckert's summary of the report before its publication and release to the public.

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- Scooby Axson

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