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FIFA Takes Steps Toward Transparency

Tom Fox | August 18, 2015

FIFA seems to have changed its tune since the U.S. Justice Department announced the indictment of 14 high-ranking officials in May. FIFA has hired the law firm of Quinn Emanuel Urquhart & Sullivan to engage in, as reported in the Wall Street Journal, “the most far-reaching and thorough review in FIFA’s 111-year history” around allegations of bribery and corruption. A FIFA official was quoted as saying, “An essential component of our efforts is an internal investigation conducted by external counsel. This work is ongoing and therefore we will not comment further.”

Why did FIFA have this change of heart? Clearly it was the fallout from the May indictments. If FIFA had continued to bury its head in the sand (or as it did with the prior internal investigation, the Garcia Report, bury it), that could have led to the United States indicting FIFA itself. If FIFA itself was indicted, that could result in the freezing of its assets.

The U.S. government has...

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