FIFA Officials Arrested on Charges of Corruption, Taken Away in Fuel-Efficient Police Fleet
Oh, you know you’ve screwed up when you merit a press release from the US Department of Justice. Nine FIFA Officials and five corporate executives were arrested this morning and were indicted on 47 counts, including racketeering, wire fraud, and money laundering (among others offenses), that took place over a 24-year span (for reference, there are people out of college now that are younger than the alleged period of corruption).
Four individual defendants and two corporate ones have already pleaded guilty.
US Attorney General Loretta E. Lynch, who was among the group announcing the indictment, said, “The indictment alleges corruption that is rampant, systematic, and deep-rooted both abroad and here in the United States. It spans at least two generations of soccer officials who, as alleged, have abused their positions of trust to acquire millions of dollars in bribes and kickbacks. And it has profoundly harmed a multitude of victims, from the youth leagues and developing countries that should benefit from the revenue generated by the commercial rights these organizations hold, to the fans at home and throughout the world whose support for the game makes those rights valuable.”
You can almost hear that as a voiceover while the police arrest the officials.
In Zurich, Switzerland, the highly environmentally-conscious authorities arrested seven of the defendants charged, and took them away.
Oh, and they used a Nissan LEAF (among other cars, like an Opel hatchback and a Smart car).
Swiss Officers showed up in a Nissan LEAF to arrest FIFA officials. Incredible.
— ebun. (@mrLBF) May 27, 2015
Swiss police aren’t just rolling in style; they’re rolling with a small carbon footprint.
More on the New Swiss Justice Mobile: Nissan’s Glow-in-the-Dark LEAF Takes On First-Ever Glowing Highway
In addition, the arrest was incredibly polite. Some were arrested without handcuffs. Others were allowed to bring their luggage (one officer even carried José Maria Marin’s suitcase). Police used covers to try to hide the identities of the arrested people. However, journalists like The New York Times’ Sam Borden still managed to get a good shot of them taking the FIFA officials away (this video shows the Opel):
Hotel staff trying to use sheets to hide officials as they exit. pic.twitter.com/o0VFKuFnQi
— Sam Borden (@SamBorden) May 27, 2015
The next step is for the officials to either agree to or oppose extradition to the United States. If they oppose it, the US will have to formally request their extradition.
While they wait, though, the Swiss police will probably offer coffee (in biodegradable cups, of course).