French anti-corruption police quiz Blatter over Qatar 2022 World Cup vote

French anti-corruption police quiz Blatter over Qatar 2022 World Cup vote
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Former Fifa president Sepp Blatter has been interviewed by French anti-corruption police investigating the controversial vote to award the 2022 World Cup to Qatar.

Blatter, 85, was summoned to appear as a “witness” on Thursday and Friday, French police said, confirming a report in Le Monde newspaper.

The inquiry is being led by France’s OCLCIFF anti-corruption unit.

Part of its focus surrounds a Nov 23, 2019, dinner hosted by then French President Nicolas Sarkozy, two high ranking Qatari officials, and Michel Platini, then head of Uefa.

Platini is suspected of having voted for Qatar at the request of Sarkozy.

Investigators are also looking at a US$300 million (S$411.5 million) contract with a US$100 million bonus for Fifa giving the television rights for the 2018 World Cup in Russia and the 2022 one in Qatar to Qatari television station Al-Jazeera, if Qatar was awarded the tournament.

Blatter’s hearing was held at the Swiss Public Prosecutor’s office in Zurich and was part of the legal process into the Qatar vote opened by France’s National Financial Prosecutor’s Office (PNF).

Blatter was Fifa president between 1998 and 2015 when he was forced to stand down and banned from football for eight years, reduced later to six, over ethics breaches.

Qatar was the surprise choice in the December 2010 Fifa vote for next year’s World Cup.

-AFP

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