Fifa bans 11 officials for ethics breaches

The governing body took the action 12 hours after seven of its members were arrested as part of an investigation into alleged corruption over a 24-year period
Fifa has banned 11 football officials in the aftermath of Wednesday's spate of arrests and indictments over corruption charges from US legal authorities.

Seven people were detained in a joint operation between the US Federal Office of Justice and the Swiss police ahead of the 65th Fifa Congress, in which either Sepp Blatter will be re-elected or Prince Ali bin al Hussein will take his place at the helm.

Fifa claimed it was the "damaged party" and said it backed the "cleaning up" of the world football governing body, which has been hit by a string of reputation-damaging incidents since it handed the World Cup finals of 2018 and 2022 to Russia and Qatar, respectively, under a cloud of bribery claims.

Following the FBI and Inland Revenue Service (IRS) giving the "red card" to Fifa in a damning press conference, the world football governing body reacted by banning 11 personnel from operating within the sport.

"On the basis of investigations carried out by the investigatory chamber of the Ethics Committee and the latest facts presented by the US Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of New York, the chairman of the adjudicatory chamber of the Ethics Committee, Hans-Joachim Eckert, today banned provisionally 11 individuals from carrying out any football-related activities on a national and international level," a statement on Fifa's website claimed.

"The decision was taken upon the request of the chairman of the investigatory chamber, Dr Cornel Borbély, based on art. 83 par.1 of the Fifa Code of Ethics.
 
"The banned individuals are: Jeffrey Webb, Eduardo Li, Julio Rocha, Costas Takkas, Jack Warner, Eugenio Figueredo, Rafael Esquivel, Jose Maria Marin, Nicolas Leoz, Chuck Blazer and Daryll Warner."

Eckert acknowledged the severity of the claims against the named and shamed figures with affiliation to Fifa and claimed the organisation was unable to let them get away without punishment.

"The charges are clearly related to football and are of such a serious nature that it was imperative to take swift and immediate action. The proceedings will follow their course in line with our Code of Ethics,” he told Fifa's website.