BERN: Venezuela football supremo Rafael Esquivel has lost his appeal to be released to house arrest while contesting extradition from Switzerland to the United States writes KEIR RADNEDGE.

Lawyers for Esquivel, a vice-president of South American confederation CONMEBOL when arrested in Zurich last May 27, had argued that he should be released on bail because of his age, 69, and medical condition.

The Swiss federal office of justice had ruled that Esquivel should be extradited to the US as requested by the American Department of Justice to answer corruption, fraud and money-laundering charges in the $200m FIFAGate scandal.

Esquivel’s subsequent appeal for a release on bail was rejected by the Federal Criminal Court out of concern that he had both reason and means to abscond.

This decision has now been upheld by the superior Federal  Court after studying legal and medical assessments.

Esquivel still hopes to win the right to be extradited home to Venezuela rather than to the US.