FIFA’s Bin Hammam ban annulledJuly 19th, 2012 - 5:37 pm ICT by IANS
Moscow, July 19 (IANS/RIA Novosti) Ex-FIFA presidential candidate Mohammed bin Hammam Thursday saw his life ban from the organization overturned on appeal by the Court of Arbitration for Sport on grounds of insufficient evidence.
The court stressed that it had not found bin Hammam innocent of the bribery allegations he had been faced with and that FIFA’s Ethics Committee could re-open the case if new evidence came to light.
FIFA banned Bin Hammam from the organisation and its related football governing bodies for life in September after envelopes containing $40,000 each were allegedly given to Caribbean Football Union delegates after the Qatari gave a speech in May 2011 as part of his campaign for the FIFA presidency.
The Switzerland-based court said that FIFA had failed to provide sufficient evidence linking the envelopes to bin Hammam, who withdrew from the presidential contest in May 2011, allowing Sepp Blatter to take a third term unopposed.
“The Panel therefore wishes to make clear that in applying the law, as it is required to do under the CAS Code, it is not making any sort of affirmative finding of innocence in relation to Mr Bin Hammam,” the court said in a website statement.
“The Panel is doing no more than concluding that the evidence is insufficient in that it does not permit the majority of the Panel to reach the standard of comfortable satisfaction in relation to the matters on which the Appellant was charged.”
The court criticised FIFA’s investigation and said its verdict did not rule out Bin Hammam as a supplier of the cash.
“No efforts were made to trace the source of (the) banknotes that were photographed, and (the Panel) recognises that it is possible to infer that the failure of Mr. Bin Hammam to carry out that relatively simple exercise in the course of these proceedings might be explained by the fact that it would have confirmed that he was the source.”
Bin Hammam left his post as head of the Asian Football Confederation in August and was succeeded by his Chinese vice-president Zhang Jilong.
He had previously headed the Qatar Football Association and was an enthusiastic advocate of his country’s successful bid to host the 2022 World Cup.
- AFC extends suspension of former president - Aug 19, 2012
- AFC extends suspension against former president - Aug 20, 2012
- Hammam turns to Arbitration Court after FIFA rejects appeal - Sep 16, 2011
- Zhang Jilong is interim AFC chief after bin Hammam's suspension - May 30, 2011
- Suspended AFC president Bin Hammam to appeal against FIFA decision - May 30, 2011
- Dominica's football chief to appeal against FIFA ban - Nov 21, 2011
- Bin Hammam writes to FIFA, claims unfair treatment - Jun 01, 2011
- AFC president rubbishes bribery charges, to appear before FIFA (Lead) - May 26, 2011
- AFC provisionally suspends Bin Hammam - Jul 17, 2012
- Bin Hammam asks FIA Code and Ethics committee to investigate Blatter - May 27, 2011
- Bin Hammam drags FIFA president Blatter to ethics committee (Lead) - May 27, 2011
- Whistleblower Blazer quits - Oct 07, 2011
- Suspended Caribbean soccer official to face FIFA graft probe Friday - Sep 20, 2011
- Vowing to clear name, Bin Hammam withdraws from FIFA presidential race - May 29, 2011
- Qatar's Mohamed bin Hammam challenges Blatter to FIFA TV debate - Mar 22, 2011
Tags: arbitration, asian football confederation, banknotes, blatter, bribery allegations, caribbean football union, cas code, court of arbitration for sport, fifa presidency, governing bodies, insufficient evidence, life ban, mr bin, new evidence, presidential candidate, presidential contest, qatari, ria novosti, simple exercise, union delegates