Sarkozy may face criminal probe over Qatar World Cup vote-buying: report

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Former French president Nicolas Sarkozy – Valery Hache-AFP via Getty Images

The selection process for the 2018 and 2022 tournaments has been mired in allegations of widespread corruption and bribery.

Former French President Nicolas Sarkozy is facing a criminal investigation in his country over allegations he accepted bribes to support Qatar’s bid to host the 2022 FIFA World Cup, the Telegraph reported Thursday.

The probe centers around a Qatari company buying a stake in a French energy and waste company, Veolia, and the sale of soccer club Paris Saint-Germain to another Qatari firm. According to the Telegraph, investigators are examining whether Sarkozy received kick-backs from those deals in exchange for France’s vote for Qatar. Sarkozy was president at the time his country supported the Qatari bid. 

The selection process for the 2018 and 2022 tournaments has been mired in allegations of widespread corruption and bribery.

In 2015, U.S. federal prosecutors indicted top officials from FIFA, soccer’s world governing body, on bribery and money laundering charges. FIFA President Sepp Blatter was subsequently forced to step down and was banned from soccer for six years.

Sarkozy is currently facing a separate criminal probe into allegations of illegal financing during his 2012 re-election campaign.


Nicolas Sarkozy under scrutiny in prosecutors’ probe into Qatar World Cup vote-buying

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 Former French President Nicolas Sarkozy CREDIT: JACKY NAEGELEN

Nicolas Sarkozy is to be embroiled in the criminal investigation into Qatar’s World Cup bid amid suggestions he may have benefited from multi-million-pound business deals linked to the Gulf state.

Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa Al-Thani 
Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa Al-Thani (L), Emir of Qatar, FIFA President Sepp Blatter (R) and the World Cup trophy after Qatar was announced as host of the FIFA World Cup 2022. CREDIT: WALTER BIERI/EPA

The Daily Telegraph can disclose that French investigators are examining whether France’s former president may have received funds from transactions negotiated around the time of the 2022 bid, including from the sale of Paris Saint-Germain football club to Qatar.

Qatar is facing a series of international criminal inquiries into its successful World Cup bid amid claims that huge bribes were paid to secure support.

France emerged as one of the key backers for the Qatari bid and the former head of Fifa has claimed that Mr Sarkozy was a central figure in ensuring that the plan was supported by Paris and the other European nations whose representatives took part in the vote in 2010. A source close to…

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One Response to “Sarkozy may face criminal probe over Qatar World Cup vote-buying: report”

  1. daveyone1 Says:

    Reblogged this on World4Justice : NOW! Lobby Forum..

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