Down in a Blaze of Banishment: FIFA Bans Ex-Official Chuck Blazer for Life
On Thursday, July 9, FIFA officials banned Chuck Blazer, the former FIFA executive committee member, for life from soccer-related activities at the national or international level. Blazer, after pleading guilty to charges of bribery, money laundering, and tax evasion, worked undercover with prosecutors in the United States to help lead to the arrest of several FIFA officials.
FIFA’s Ethics Committee had suspended its original investigations into Blazer regarding corrupt financial management in May 2013 after it received written assurances that he was suffering from colon cancer and would not engage in football-related activities. However, the proceedings reopened in December 2014 and have now resulted in Blazer’s life ban, effective as of July 9.
In a statement, FIFA explained that the case presented by the Justice Department against Blazer was key in his expulsion from global soccer. FIFA declared that
“[i]n his positions as a football official, he was a key player in schemes involving the offer, acceptance, payment and receipt of undisclosed and illegal payments, bribes and kickbacks as well as other money-making schemes.”