FIFA to open new probe into Caribbean meeting

*federations given 48 hours to pass information to FIFA

BERNE, (Reuters) – FIFA are set to open a further  investigation into the meeting of Caribbean football officials  which resulted in former presidential candidate Mohamed Bin  Hammam being banned for life.
Soccer’s governing body told Reuters that all Caribbean  Football Union (CFU) member associations had been given 48 hours  to “provide and report all relevant information in their  possession” about the meeting in Port of Spain on May 10-11  where Bin Hammam was alleged to have offered votes for cash.
“Following this 48 hour period, the ethics committee will be  asked to open the necessary ethics proceedings,” FIFA told  Reuters in an email today.
“Truthful and complete reporting will be considered in  mitigation by the ethics committee when deciding on potential  sanctions.
“Any person who has relevant information but does not come  forward during this 48 hour period will be subject to the full  range of sanctions.”
The announcement came after ethics committee acting head  Petrus Damaseb, who announced Bin Hammam’s ban on Saturday,  recommended investigations “into conduct of others who attended  the meeting of 10-11 May.”
CFU officials Debbie Minguell and Jason Sylvester were given  one-year bans for their role in the meeting while former  CONCACAF president Jack Warner, also placed under investigation,  resigned last month.
Under FIFA statutes, this led to the investigation against  Warner being dropped and the former FIFA powerbroker presumed  innocent.
Bin Hammam, the former head of the Asian Football  Confederation (AFC) and FIFA executive committee member, was  found guilty of breaking seven articles of FIFA’s ethics code,  including bribery, after some federations, including Bahamas,  Puerto Rico and Suriname, said they were offered money at the  meeting.
He withdrew from the FIFA presidential election on May 29,  allowing Sepp Blatter to be re-elected unopposed for a fourth  term three days later.
A preliminary report by the ethics committee in June said:  “The comprehensive, convincing and overwhelming evidence permits  to conclude prima facie that the accused (Warner) has initiated  and arranged a special meeting of the CFU member associations  for Mr Bin Hammam.”
“Furthermore on the occasion of this meeting it seems that  Mr Bin Hammam offered, at least indirectly and under the pledge  of secrecy, to each of the member associations an envelope  containing $40,000.”
FIFA also rejected Bin Hammam’s call to make the evidence  against him public.
“Mr Bin Hammam is in full possession of all evidence on his  case,” said FIFA.
“As is usual practice, FIFA does not make any motivated  decision or any parts of the file public. This is confidential  information provided only to the parties involved.”
It confirmed that Bin Hammam could only launch an appeal  after receiving the full written decision.

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