Two FIFA officials were arrested in Switzerland on Thursday on the suspicion of accepting millions of dollars in bribes, according to the Swiss Federal Office of Justice.
Alfredo Hawit, a FIFA vice president and the president of CONCACAF, the regional governing body that the US falls under, and Juan Napout, CONMEBOL's president, were arrested following a morning raid at Swiss hotel Baur au Lac at 6:00 a.m., according to The New York Times. The arrests were requested by the US, per the release, and both are opposing their extradition to the US.
If you're bored listening to a PowerPoint on governance, why not watch my grainy video of the FIFA arrest this morn? pic.twitter.com/TbvxQEoqbW— Sam Borden (@SamBorden) December 3, 2015
The two were in Zurich ahead of FIFA executive committee meetings. Hawit was named interim president after previous CONCACAF president Jeffrey Webb was charged with racketering and more by the US Department of Justice in May. More arrests took place on Thursday, according to The New York Times, but FIFA president Sepp Blatter was not among them. Blatter has been under pressure for an alleged payment to UEFA president Michel Platini. A new FIFA president will be elected in February.
FIFA responded to the arrests later on Thursday:
FIFA is aware of the actions taken today by the U.S. Department of Justice. FIFA will continue to cooperate fully with the U.S. investigation as permitted by Swiss law, as well as with the investigation being led by the Swiss Office of the Attorney General. FIFA will have no further comment on today’s developments.
We'll have more on this story as it continues to develop.
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