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Thursday, July 13, 2017
Central Figure in the FIFA Corruption Scandal Dies

Chuck Blazer, a central figure in the FIFA corruption scandal, has died at the age of 72.

The disgraced former FIFA Executive Committee member and ex-Confederation of North, Central American and Caribbean Association Football (CONCACAF) general secretary, struck a plea deal in 2013 and turned whistle-blower for the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

He was key to several FIFA officials being arrested in Zurich in May 2015.

Blazer admitted accepting bribes in connection with the 1998 and 2010 World Cup bid processes, won by France and South Africa respectively.

The American, who was given a life ban from all football activities in 2015, had been suffering from cancer.

“We are truly saddened by the passing of our client and friend, Chuck Blazer,” a statement from his lawyers read.

“His misconduct, for which he accepted full responsibility, should not obscure Chuck’s positive impact on international soccer.

“With Chuck’s guidance and leadership, CONCACAF transformed itself from impoverished to profitable, with substantial benefits and improvements to all member associations, players and fans.

“Chuck also accepted responsibility for his own conduct by pleading guilty and owning up to his mistakes.

“Chuck felt profound sorrow and regret for his actions.

“He expressed sincere remorse towards his former constituents and colleagues, and to all the soccer players and fans disappointed by his conduct.”

Information provided by Blazer ultimately led to charges being made against 14 FIFA officials, either current or former.

It ultimately contributed to the FIFA’s then President Sepp Blatter falling from office, with the Swiss official eventually being given a six-year ban.

Blazer was found by CONCACAF's Integrity Committee to have received more than $20.6 million in commissions, fees and rental payments from the organization, from the period between 1996 and 2011.
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