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Sepp Blatter and Michel Platini suspended by Fifa from all football for 90 days

World football's governing body has been thrown into further disarray as the President and would-be President are suspended

Tom Peck
Thursday 08 October 2015 11:31 BST
Sepp Blatter and Michel Platini
Sepp Blatter and Michel Platini (GETTY IMAGES)

Fifa President Sepp Blatter, Secretary General Jerome Valcke and Uefa President Michel Platini have all been suspended from football by Fifa’s Ethics Committee.

German Judge Hans Joachim Eckert, who chairs Fifa’s adjudicatory chamber took the decision to ban all three men, in the wake of allegations made against them by a Swiss police investigation into corruption at Fifa.

He also banned Dr Chung Mong-Joon, a South Korean businessman and Fifa Presidential hopeful, for a period of six years, and fined him 100,000 Swiss Francs (£72,000), finding him to have behaved improperly in the bidding process for the 2022 World Cup.

The news came just minutes after Michel Platini announced he had submitted his required five nominations from Fifa nations to run in February’s Presidential election.

The 90 day bans contain the provision to be extended by 45 days, which would cover the period until three days before the election takes place.

The judgment makes it impossible for Dr Chung to stand for election, and will likely mean the same for Mr Platini.

The outgoing President faces accusations from Swiss police of signing a television rights contract “unfavourable” to the organisation with the disgraced former head of Caribbean football Jack Warner, who made millions of dollars in personal profit from the deal. He is also accused of making a £1.35m payment to Uefa President Michel Platini, which Swiss investigators have described as “disloyal” to Fifa.

Fifa investigation timeline

If normal procedures are followed, Fifa’s most Senior Vice President, the Cameroonian Issa Hayatou will be installed as acting President. He has previously been the subject of allegations over ticketing and marketing rights scandals.

Sepp Blatter had declared he would carry on as Fifa President until February 26th, when an extraordinary election takes place, despite calls for his immediate resignation last week from four of Fifa’s top sponsors, Coca-Cola, Visa, McDonald’s and Budweiser.

Angel Maria Villa Llonar, the Spanish former footballer and anti-reform member of Fifa’s Executive Committee would take over at Uefa in Platini’s absence. Hayatou has previously been implicated in allegations over illegal World Cup ticketing sales. Villa Llonar is regarded as the architect of vote-swapping deals for the 2018 and 2022 World Cup bids, in which a joint Spain and Portugal bid for 2018 was nearly successful. His son is a member of Fifa’s Reform Committee, but has been accused of extortion by eight South American football clubs.

In a statement issued by his lawyers, Blatter indicated he would appeal the decision made by the Ethics Committee, a course of action that will begin with Fifa's Appeals Committee, but could end at the Court of Arbitration for Sport.

"President Blatter was disappointed that the Ethics Committee did not follow the Code of Ethics and Disciplinary Code, both of which provide for an opportunity to be heard," it said.

"Further, the Ethics Committee based its decision on a misunderstanding of the actions of the Attorney General in Switzerland, which has opened an investigation but brought no charge against the President. In fact, the prosecutors will be obliged by law to dismiss the case if their investigation, barely two weeks old, does not establish sufficient evidence.

"President Blatter looks forward to opportunity to present evidence that will demonstrate he did not engage in any misconduct."

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