By Chris Wright
Position yourselves over your Victorian fainting couches people, for this is going to come as quite a shock.
Documents released pertaining to an investigation carried out into the bidding process for the 2022 Qatar World Cup appear to show that former FIFA vice president Jack Warner and members of his family was paid millions of pounds by a Qatari company controlled by ex-Asian Football Confederation president Mohammed bin Hammam.
The Telegraph, who have been conducting the aforementioned investigation into the bid, reported their findings thus:
“Jack Warner, the former vice-president of Fifa, appears to have been personally paid $1.2 million (£720,000) from a company controlled by a former Qatari football official (Bin Hammam) shortly after the decision to award the country the tournament.
“Payments totalling almost $750,000 (£450,000) were made to Mr Warner’s sons, documents show. A further $400,000 (£240,000) was paid to one of his employees.
“It is understood that the FBI is now investigating Trinidad-based Mr Warner and his alleged links to the Qatari bid, and that the former Fifa official’s eldest son, who lives in Miami, has been helping the inquiry as a co-operating witness.”
The Telegraph go on to say that the FBI’s interest was piqued when the payments to Warner and his swarthy chums were processed by a bank in New York having already been turned down by “at least one bank in the Cayman Islands”.
Warner resigned from his FIFA post in 2011 after being suspended over allegations that he and Bin Hammam conspired to bribe Caribbean officials with envelopes stuffed with £25,000 in return for their votes while the latter was attempting to usurp Sepp Blatter in the last FIFA presidential election.
Bin Hammam was banned for life by FIFA’s Ethics committee but the ban was later overturned by the Court of Arbitration for Sport.
Call us cynics, but we reckon one more round of bribery allegations isn’t going to make a blind bit of difference to the 2022 World Cup and when or where it’s staged.
After all, what’s a bit of collusion between friends?