Demonising Justin Gatlin
13th September 2015
The Adjudicatory Chamber of the FIFA Ethics Committee has extended the suspension of Jérôme Valcke by 45 days following the request of the Investigatory Chamber, which yesterday recommended a nine-year ban for the FIFA General Secretary. The decision to extend the ban appears to contradict yesterday’s Ethics Committee statement, which read: ‘Until a formal decision is taken by the adjudicatory chamber of the Ethics Committee, Mr Valcke is presumed innocent’.
A statement issued by Valcke’s lawyer, Barry H. Berke, repeated earlier assertions that Valcke has done nothing wrong. ‘The Investigatory Chamber of the FIFA Ethics Committee has chosen to ignore Jerome Valcke’s exemplary conduct and extraordinary contributions during his long tenure as Secretary General’, read the e-mailed statement. ‘Today’s press release is nothing more than a self-serving public relations effort to wrongly attack Mr. Valcke in a desperate attempt to try to prove that FIFA can police itself. Mr. Valcke did absolutely nothing wrong as any independent and fair review of the facts would establish.’
As reported by the Sports Integrity Initiative yesterday, Valcke was found to have breached nine Articles of the FIFA Code of Ethics. Although FIFA has yet to release its reasons for recommending a nine-year ban, it is understood to be due to allegations Valcke was involved a scheme to profit from selling World Cup tickets at above face value, and his involvement in allowing former FIFA Vice President Jack Warner to administer US$10 million, which FIFA withheld from the operational budget of the organising committee for the 2010 FIFA World Cup South Africa for a ‘Diaspora Legacy Programme’ in the CONCACAF region.
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