FIFA hits Blazer with provisional ban

ChuckBlazer2 (Getty)

By DAN KARELL

When a report into alleged fraud and financial malcontent was released on April 19, former CONCACAF General Secretary Chuck Blazer likely knew that his days in FIFA were numbered.

In a move that could be seen from a mile away, FIFA’s Ethics Committee chairman Hans-Joachim Eckert announced that Chuck Blazer had been banned from taking part in any national or international soccer activities for a maximum period of 90 days.

The ban comes on the heels of the scathing report against Blazer and former CONCACAF President Jack Warner, which outlines a number of issues including fraud, misappropriating funds, and violating FIFA and CONCACAF statutes. Blazer in particular allegedly used CONCACAF funds to finance his personal life and charged the region’s soccer body $15 million in the form of fees, commissions, and rent expenses without obtaining the proper authorization after his contract with CONCACAF ended in July of 1998.

What do you make of this news? Do you see Blazer’s ban being extended? Think a 90-day ban is a slap on the wrist?

Share your thoughts below.

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28 Responses to FIFA hits Blazer with provisional ban

  1. ChiTown says:

    Fat b*stard.

  2. Rory says:

    The story as I see it: Blazer, who did a lot of good for the US, helped get Jack Warner in power (at the expense of an American who was going to run for that position), then the two lived high off the hog. A whistleblower came forward over the Qatari Ben Hamman bribes for Caribbean votes and Blazer had to hire the special prosecutor to investigate Warner. All of the investigators and Blazer himself were Americans. Warner was found to be guilty of arranging the meetings between Hamman and the Caribbean execs where money switched hands (a paltry $40,000 per vote I believe), then Warner unleashed some accusations against Blazer. Warner was removed from power, a Barbados exec was put in his place who then tried to fire Blazer but FIFA said he didn’t have the power and the exec was fired instead. The new president of Concacaf then had a thorough review where sure enough, Warner and Blazer were accused. The new guy had a judge from Barbados investigate Blazer and say he was using Concacaf money for lavish livings and accused him of stealing (although Warner had set up Blazer’s 10% cut on all Concacaf TV deals so I don’t know if that’s stealing or what) and pointed out that Blazer’s people dropped the ball on Concacaf’s tax papers so they lost their non-profit status. Did I leave anything out? Oh yeah, this makes just yet another FIFA investigation where all the guilt is, surprise surprise, found to be be with the previous guys in charge and never the guys still in charge (Blazer had already stepped down from his Concacaf duties).

    • Bobb says:

      Sounds about right… and you are right that Blazer did do a lot of good, like the 2010 World Cup television contract, where he brought in like an extra hundred million.

    • FSegaud says:

      $40k x each spec of an island added up to a crap load…hardly paltry.

  3. elgringorico says:

    ” Blazer in particular allegedly used CONCACAF funds to finance his personal life””

    How is this not completely illegal — as in, embezzlement resulting in jail time

    • Mig says:

      I have a feeling it is simply a matter of no jurisdiction. For a criminal prosecution, some prosecutor in some country has to actually bring charges and I’m not sure in a multi-national non-profit who that would be. Best chance would be tax evasion in a country that prosecutes that.

      interesting thought though.

    • Rory says:

      Depends, if those apartments are officially Concacaf property (ie their name on the deed) but Blazer was living in them, then it’s a job perk, not a crime. Hell, you think Jack Warner didn’t sign off on that stuff? It’s like a company car but on a bigger level.

      • DingDong says:

        Maybe, but it’s a job perk that should have been reported as income. And if Blazer didn’t pay taxes on them, he could prosecuted for tax fraud. As he’s a U.S. citizen, the U.S. definitely has jurisdiction to enforce its tax law against him.

  4. Jozy has scored 30 goals all season says:

    looks like the former president of Brazil

  5. Charles says:

    IF we just get rid of Blazer, THEN FIFA will not be corrupt.

    • Rory says:

      Hahahaha… Just as long as it’s only former execs who get busted, Fifa will be just fine, right?

  6. Kevin_Amold says:

    What is it about these sport bureaucracies that makes them so susceptible to corruption? Can they (FIFA, the IOC, etc) ever be cleaned up?

    • Josh says:

      As someone who has done a number of research papers on the topic from a legal perspective, the change has to come from within. (ie. Until Sepp and his system of hypocrisy are gone, highly unlikely).

      If Sepp runs for president again, there may be no turning back

  7. Leo says:

    Say it ain’t so, Santa.

  8. Redneck says:

    A three-month ban doesn’t seem like much of a punishment.

  9. Vinz Clortho says:

    C is for Chuckie, that’s good enough for me.
    C is for chunky, that’s good enough for me
    C is for corruptie, that’s good enough for me oh….
    Corrupt and Chunky Chucky starts with C….

  10. Vic says:

    Didn’t one of them challenge Sepp Blatter for Fifa presidency, isn’t that when the problems started?

  11. Soccer Lee says:

    Should be banned for life and jailed. Yes he might have done good at one time, but that doesn’t give him the right to set himself up as a demi-god with a sludge fund.

  12. Thebumswillalwayslose says:

    So I guess I’m confused as to what he’s being banned from, exactly. Ol’ boy stepped down from his CONCACAF position over a year ago, then just recently lost his Ex-Co seat to Sunil. So…. what “national or international soccer activities” is he a part of anyway?

    I’m sure I’m missing something, but it’s really looking like the conversation went:

    Ethics Committee: “So, Mr. Blazer it’s been found that you’ve committed fraud, misappropriated funds to the tune of $15 million and generally abused your position of authority in every way possible. You are banned from participating in any national or international soccer activities for 90 days”
    Chuck: “Uh, guys? I haven’t worked for CONCACAF in over a year and I just lost my re-election bid for the Ex-Co. I don’t have any ‘soccer activities’ to participate in anyway.”
    Ethics Committee: “We know, that’s the point! We’re not ACTUALLY gonna do anything about this, hell we ALL do this stuff. Just makes it look like we did something. Isn’t this great?!”
    Chuck: “Sure is. Speaking of which, who’s got a FIFA company card and can buy me lunch? I’m starving.”

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