Swiss authorities seize IT data from FIFA officials, including Sepp Blatter
The Swiss Attorney General's office “seized IT data” from multiple high-ranking FIFA officials Wednesday, it confirmed to the BBC.
Data was seized from FIFA president Sepp Blatter, general secretary Jerome Valcke and the organization's finance head, according to the BBC's Richard Conway.
The Swiss have been investigating FIFA and the bidding process for the 2018 and 2022 World Cups, which were awarded to Russia and Qatar, respectively. Swiss federal prosecutors said on May 27 that they had opened criminal proceedings in the matter. Reuters reported on June 3 that the FBI is also investigating the bid process.
The Swiss investigation is separate from the American investigation that has already led to the indictment of 14 FIFA officials and business partners.
Swiss Attorney Gen: "FIFA handed over today seized IT Data to the OAG... the OAG’s has opened criminal proceedings against persons unknown."— Richard Conway (@richard_conway) June 10, 2015
Fifa deny it was a raid. I understand data taken from offices including Sepp Blatter, Jerome Valcke + head of finance.— Richard Conway (@richard_conway) June 10, 2015
Swiss investigators told FIFA they had identified IT material needed for their 2018/22 inquiry. FIFA cooperated today and handed it over.— Richard Conway (@richard_conway) June 10, 2015
IT data said to include 2018/22 technical reports files. Offices of Blatter, Valcke + Kattner part of data collection.— Richard Conway (@richard_conway) June 10, 2015
Blatter announced on June 2 that he will resign as FIFA's president, with an election to name his successor to be held at least four months from now.
Blatter's announcement came one day after a report in The New York Times stated that Valcke, Blatter's top deputy, was the FIFA official who prosecutors say wired $10 million to accounts controlled by former CONCACAF president Jack Warner.
Prosecutors allege that money was originally supposed to be paid to South Africa to support the 2010 World Cup and was instead paid to Warner as a bribe in exchange for three votes for South Africa's World Cup bid.
- Dan Gartland