FIFA Executives Quizzed About Russia, Qatar World Cup Decisions
FIFA Chief Investigator Michael Garcia "made a surprise swoop" on members of the exec committee "who took part in the controversial bids" for the 2018 and 2022 World Cup, according to Martyn Ziegler of the PA. The members were unaware that U.S. attorney Garcia "would be in Zurich waiting to interview them before the executive committee meeting this week." Garcia "has completed the interviews" -- only 12 of the 22 members who took part in the vote in Dec. '10, plus FIFA President Sepp Blatter, are still in office. Garcia, the head of the investigatory chamber of the FIFA ethics committee, "met some members" including UEFA President Michel Platini on Wednesday and other members on Thursday. Meanwhile, former FIFA senior exec Jérôme Champagne, who announced earlier this year that he wants to stand for the FIFA presidency next year, said that Garcia's investigation "held the key to the reputation of the World Cup." Champagne said, "The process must go to the end. The World Cup must be unimpeachable, it must be untainted and it must be incorruptible" (PA, 3/20).