NEW YORK: Relief for Sepp Blatter and the FIFA’s president’s entourage: the unsealed court papers concerning Chuck Blazer’s admission to corruption charges turned up nothing beyond information largely already in the public domain.
Blazer had been turned and had been working undercover for FBI investigators for 18 months before his enforced departure from the world football federation’s executive committee.
Blazer, 70, struck a deal with prosecutors in the United States after pleading guilty to charges of bribery, money laundering and tax evasion.
Details of that agreement have been revealed after a judge agreed to a request by five media groups.
The document shows Blazer was secretly co-operating from December 2011. He had served on the FIFA exco from 1997-2013 when he also held a key position as general secretary of the central/north American confederation CONCACAF.
Last month, US prosecutors indicted 14 football officials and marketeers – including two FIFA vice-presidents – on charges of racketeering, fraud and money laundering involving tens of millions of dollars over two decades.
The 19-page co-operation agreement was signed in November 2013 – the day Blazer pleaded guilty – but references written agreements between himself and the US government dated back to December 29, 2011.
The document says: “The defendant agrees to furnish to the office all documents and other material that may be relevant to this investigation… and to participate in undercover activities pursuant to the specific instructions of law enforcement agents.”
The Daily News reported last year that Blazer had bugged meetings with executives at the London 2012 Olympics with a wire device concealed in a key fob.