Platini quizzed in Swiss investigation

Associated PressUpdated: Monday, August 31, 2020, 10:21 PM IST
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Michel Platini | File photo

Bern

Soccer great Michel Platini arrived at Switzerland's federal prosecution office Monday morning to be questioned about a $2 million payment he received from FIFA in 2011.

Platini is formally a suspect because of the payment that led to his removal as president of European soccer body UEFA, and as a candidate to lead FIFA, when Swiss federal investigators revealed the allegation five years ago.

The 65-year-old ex-France captain is suspected of being an accomplice to criminal mismanagement, of misappropriation and an act of forgery, according to documents seen in June by The Associated Press.

Platini, a former FIFA vice president, did not comment on the case Monday when he walked into the prosecution headquarters.

Sepp Blatter, the 84-year-old former FIFA president who authorised Platini getting the money as deferred salary for work as his adviser a decade earlier, is due to be questioned Tuesday in Bern.

A criminal proceeding has been open against Blatter for the Platini payment since September 2015 when federal police questioned both men in an unannounced visit to FIFA offices in Zurich on the day they attended an executive committee meeting.

Both men were provisionally suspended from soccer, then banned by FIFA's ethics committee. Blatter's 18-year presidency of soccer's international governing body was ended by the case and his six-year ban runs until October next year.

Platini submitted invoices to FIFA in January 2011 seeking payment for additional salary for advising in Blatter's first presidential term, from 1998-2002.

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