FIFA finds it bizarre that a Swiss court opened an investigation last week into chairman Gianni Infantino of the world football association.
“There is no factual basis for this criminal investigation,” FIFA Deputy Secretary General Alasdair Bell said at a digital press conference Monday.
“No description of the alleged criminal behavior has been communicated to us. That is why it is all a bit ridiculous and dishonest. We are 100 percent convinced that there will be no charges against the FIFA President.”
A Zurich court is investigating Infantino’s contacts with Attorney General Michael Lauber, who headed the Swiss prosecutor’s office. Last week, Lauber offered his resignation after the court concluded that he had withheld a meeting with Infantino. He should have asked for official permission.
Infantino, who succeeded the controversial Sepp Blatter as FIFA president in 2016, said the meeting with Lauber was “perfectly legal” in a statement. “It is not a violation of anything.”
According to Bell, Infantino spoke to Lauber in 2016 and 2017 because the Attorney General was leading quite a few cases at the time that stemmed from the FIFA scandal that cost Blatter his job. “You go to the head of the Swiss prosecutor’s office to provide information and then you become part of a criminal investigation yourself. It is quite absurd.”