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 Blatter, Platini to face Swiss corruption trial in June

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Former FIFA president Sepp Blatter arrives before a commemoration service for the former coach of the Swiss national soccer team Koebi Kuhn at the Grossmuenster church in Zurich, Switzerland December 13, 2019. REUTERS/Arnd Wiegmann/File Photo

Former FIFA officials Sepp Blatter and Michel Platini will go on trial in June to face Swiss corruption charges over a $2 million payment that world soccer’s governing body made to Platini, the court announced on Tuesday.

Both Blatter and Platini have repeatedly denied wrongdoing in the past over the incident, for which Swiss prosecutors indicted them in November.

Former head of European football association UEFA Michel Platini leaves a judicial police station where he was detained for questioning over the awarding of the 2022 World Cup soccer tournament, in Nanterre, France June 19, 2019. REUTERS/Gonzalo Fuentes

Prosecutors allege former FIFA president Blatter improperly arranged the payment to Platini in 2011 for consulting work.

Both are suspected of fraud and other charges amid what became part of the biggest corruption scandal to shake FIFA.

Blatter, who led FIFA for 17 years, resigned in 2015, followed by Platini in 2016. Both were handed six-year bans for ethics violations.

The trial before the Swiss Federal Criminal Court is due to start on June 8 and last until June 22, the court said on its website.

Reuters

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Kunle Solaja is the author of landmark books on sports and journalism as well as being a multiple award-winning journalist and editor of long standing. He is easily Nigeria’s foremost soccer diarist and Africa's most capped FIFA World Cup journalist, having attended all FIFA World Cup finals from Italia ’90 to Qatar 2022. He was honoured at the Qatar 2022 World Cup by FIFA and AIPS.

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