27 May 2016
Details are slowly emerging that as many as 16 bank accounts were held by FIFA officials at Swiss private bank Julius Baer, with at least four of them held by officials indicted by the US Department of Justice in its investigation into FIFA corruption and money laundering.
The news, reported in leading Swiss financial journal Insideparadeplatz.com, indicates that Julius Baer was far more involved in the scandal than it has been willing to admit to date, despite the arrest of one of its former senior officials, Argentine Jorge Arzuaga.
Initially the bank had said that perhaps four of its clients had been linked to the FIFA scandal, but in fact the bank has referred at least 16 accounts linked to FIFA officials to the Swiss Money Laundering Reporting Office in Bern. The referrals were made by Julius Baer after US and Swiss prosecutors had begun their hunt for corrupt officials and sports marketers linked to FIFA.
The four named in the US indictments that have been identified as holding accounts at the bank are: Nicolas Leoz, former president of CONMEBOL; Eduardo Deluca, secretary general of CONMEBOL between 1986 and 2011; Alejandro Burzaco, former chief executive of sports marketing agency Torneos y Competencias; and sports marketer Jose Margulies.
The identities of the other 12 account holders are unknown but it seems likely they will include more south and north American football officials. How many European account holders have been referred is unknown. It is also unknown as to whether any of the account holders were full time FIFA employees.
Count this content towards your CPD minutes, by signing up to our CPD WalletFREE CPD Wallet