clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

New FIFA indictment is bigger than the first one, and the DOJ isn't done yet

New, comment

Loretta Lynch and her crew got up to the mic cut a diss track on FIFA.

Keith Lane/Getty Images

Two FIFA Executive Committee members got arrested in Switzerland on Thursday morning as part of a superseding indictment from the United States Department of Justice, on top of the one originally handed down in May. This one looks like it might even be a bigger deal than the first one.

The biggest fish in the original FIFA indictment was Jeffrey Webb, then the CONCACAF president. The other big names were people who had already stepped down from their leadership positions in global soccer or executives at sports marketing companies. This time around, eight active executives and eight other very recent ones have been indicted, including three FIFA Executive Committee members. As a part of this new indictment, another ExCo member has plead guilty, while members of four other FIFA committees were named.

This is a bigger deal than the original indictment, and the Department of Justice says it's not done yet. Here's what you need to know.

Everyone who got indicted

Alfredo Hawit, CONCACAF president
Ariel Alvarado, former Panamanian FA president
Rafael Callejas, former Honduran FA president
Brayan Jimenez, Guatamalan FA president
Rafael Salguero, former Guatemalan FA president
Hector Trujillo, Guatemalan FA general secretary
Reynaldo Vazquez, former Salvadoran FA president
Juan Angel Napout, CONMEBOL president
Manuel Burga, former Peru FA president
Carlos Chavez, former Bolvian FA president
Luis Chiriboga, Ecuadoran FA president
Marco Polo Del Nero, Brazilian FA president
Ricardo Teixeira, former Brazilian FA president
Eduardo Deluca, former general secretary of CONMEBOL
Romer Osuna, former treasurer of CONMEBOL
Jose Luis Meiszner, general secretary of CONMEBOL

If you missed the fun last time around, here's a profile of the 18 men who were indicted in the first round, plus four more of the biggest players.

This is a really bad look for Copa America 2016

Not that it was possible to make that tournament look good. Next year's edition of South America's continental championship, which will be played in the United States and include six CONCACAF teams, was more or less invented for the sole purpose of committing fraud. But CONMEBOL, CONCACAF and U.S. Soccer voted to go forward with the tournament after being assured it was fraud-free, and then a bunch of the folks who made that decision got indicted.

New deals to promote that tournament and show it on television have been handed out, and presumably, they're all legitimate. These folks wouldn't try to pull the same stuff twice ... right? Cross your fingers.

There are eight new guilty pleas, five rom people not in the original indictment

Here are the people who have plead guilty. First, from the original indictment:

Jeffrey Webb, former CONCACAF president
Alejandro Durzaco of TyC
Jose Margulies of Valente, Somerton

And the five others:

Luis Bedoya, former president of the Colombian FA, FIFA Executive Committee member
Sergio Jadue, former president of the Chilean FA
Zorana Danis of International Soccer Marketing
Fabio Tordin, former CEO of Traffic, currently of Media World
Rodger Huguet of Media World

Bedoya is by far the most interesting of that group, since he was the president of the Colombian FA until very recently and on the FIFA Executive Committee. Jadue was also his federation's president until this fall.

Here are the guys currently on FIFA committees

The last indictment was mostly old news. This one wasn't. Eight of the 16 people indicted on Thursday are currently making big decisions at FIFA. The three executive committee members might be the most alarming, but check out Osuna, Alvarado and Jimenez too.

Osuna: Audit and compliance
Alvarado: Disciplinary
Jimenez: Fair play
Burga: Development
Callejas: Marketing and television
Napout: Executive
Hawit: Executive
Del Nero: Executive

Yikes. Osuna was one of the guys in charge of cleaning up corruption at FIFA, while Alvarado punishes folks who get busted for corruption. Jimenez probably didn't get to do anything to wreck the sport, but his committee appointment is still funny.

Additionally, former Executive Committee members Rafael Salguero and Ricardo Teixeira were included in the superseding indictment, while current ExCo member Bedoya plead guilty before he could get indicted.

The DOJ is still going hard

"This is truly outrageous," Attorney General Loretta Lynch said about the defendants' alleged crimes. "The scale of corruption alleged is unconscionable. And the message of this announcement should be clear to every culpable individual who remains in the shadows, hoping to evade this ongoing investigation: You will not wait us out and you will not escape our focus."

And the DOJ wasn't done there. "Let me make it clear and amplify the message even more," said prosecutor Robert Capers. "We are progressing in our efforts to root out what has been decades of systematic corruption. So, we say to you, enough is enough. If you are involved in or have the desire to partake, now is not the time to hold power or seek to gain power. Now is the time to step away and make room for a new generation of leader who we hope will give soccer and its millions of fans the leadership they richly deserve. We look forward to continuing our work with our international partners. There is more work to be done and we aim to do it, and we hope it becomes an increasingly global effort."

FBI assistant director in charge of the case Diego Rodriguez added that those seeking to profit from soccer in a criminal manner "will play by our rules."

While taking questions from media, Lynch was asked if the Department of Justice had figured out the exact scale of the corruption, and responded by taking a shot at FIFA, emphasis ours. "We have, we believe, a very good picture of the scope of the bribery and the scope of the corruption, both in the past and reaching into the future," she said. "While we feel we do have a view into the nature of the corruption, the endemic nature of the corruption and the widespread nature, we are concerned about the viability of [FIFA and its confederations] going forward, and hope that they will take all appropriate steps to make sure their efforts going forward are open, fair and honest."

So if you're out there doing illegal things as part of your involvement in global soccer, you should probably stop. The United States Department of Justice is extremely intent on finding you, and if they don't, they might just blow up the thing that allows you to get paid.

* * *

SB Nation presents: A simple and realistic plan to destroy FIFA forever