World football governing body, FIFA, has officially lodged a complaint of “criminal mismanagement” against its former president Sepp Blatter.
The charge relates to the involvement of Mr Blatter and other former officials in the FIFA museum project.
This is the latest in the series of allegations of financial impropriety against Mr Blatter, who was literally forced out of office in 2015 amid a corruption scandal.
The 84-year-old has always denied any wrongdoing.
According to documents reportedly seen by the PA news agency, FIFA states:
“Following a detailed review of historic facts and circumstances concerning the construction and on-going operational costs of the FIFA Museum, FIFA has become aware of many serious irregularities regarding this project, which raise strong suspicions of criminal misconduct on the part of various different officials and companies associated with the matter.
“As a result, FIFA is now duty-bound to refer the matter to the Zurich prosecutor’s office for further investigation and, if necessary, prosecution.
“The criminal complaint filed by FIFA is directed against various members of the former FIFA management, including former president Joseph Blatter, as well as further ‘unknown’ potential suspects.
“It is suspected that these individuals may have been involved in various acts of criminal mismanagement, and possibly other related offences.”
The museum project began in 2013. Two years later, amid a corruption scandal, Blatter announced his resignation from the FIFA presidency after 17 years in the role.
It is understood the matter will also be brought to the attention of FIFA’s independent ethics committee.
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