The Swiss court acquits Blatter and Platini of the fraud case

Switzerland: on Friday the Swiss judiciary acquitted the former heads of the International and European Federations, the Swiss Joseph Blatter and the French Michel Platini, in a case of fraud that destroyed their administrative career. The Criminal Court of Plaintzona, in Switzerland, did not accept in mid-June the requests of the Public Prosecutor to jail Blatter (86 years) and Platini (67 years), with one year and eight months of suspension, for fraud to the International Federation (FIFA) for Platini who obtained a unjustified compensation of two million Swiss francs (1.8 million euros) for consulting for Blatter between 1998 and 2002. Platini and Blatter signed a written agreement in August 1999 to pay FIFA 300,000 Swiss francs to the year, confirming that he had agreed with a verbal contract to pay 700,000 francs in more per year when FIFA finances allowed. Platini, who held the presidency of the European Union (from 2007 to 2015) and had aspired to the presidency of FIFA, presented at the beginning of 2011 a bill of 2 million Swiss francs (1.8 million euros), which Blatter signed and presented to FIFA as a back wage, which the prosecutor found false. The two men who asked for absolution denounced political and judicial manipulation aimed at removing them from power. During the investigation and two weeks of hearings, the defense tried to introduce the possibility of a possible behind-the-scenes role for current FIFA president Gianni Infantino, who was Platini’s right-hand man at FIFA, then was unexpectedly elected to the FIFA presidency in early 2016, after a historic corruption scandal and the squandering of hundreds of millions of dollars on football organization officials. (AFP)