RIO DE JANEIRO: Money-laundering charges against Ricardo Teixeira – president of the Brazilian football confederation and a senior member of the FIFA executive committee – have been dropped.
Lawyers representing Teixeira, whose name has been closely linked with the long-running ISL saga, obtained a Federal Court order halting a police investigation which had apparently come to a standstill.
Brazilian investigators had been unable to obtain access to documents in Switzerland relating to allegations of illicit payments.
World federation FIFA has appeared this week to be in some sort of confusion over issues concerning ISL which had been the organisation’s marketing partner for nearly two decades before its bankruptcy in 2001. FIFA president Sepp Blatter has said he wants the case file opened while, simultaneously, FIFA and two unnamed officials have been trying to keep it closed.
Lawyers for Teixeira are now reported in Brazil as considering their next step after FIFA and the two officials suffered a court defeat in Zug, Switzerland, over their demand that the documents remain secret.
Teixeira, who is currently absent from football duties on health grounds, has issued a positive statement about 2014 World Cup preparations.
Though he has handed over the presidency of COL to former World Cup hero Ronaldo, Teixeira is still considered the power behind the throne.
Teixeira, vis-à-vis the World Cup, noted that officials from only two of the proposed 12 venues – Porto Alegre and Brasilia – had not applied for stadia redevelopment loans.
FIFA president Sepp Blatter and secretary-general Jerome Valcke are expected to fly to Brazil in mid-January for high-level discussions with President Dilma Rousseff concerning World Cup preparations.
Valcke will then be visiting Brazil regularly every two months or more to try to keep on top of work.