FIFA Ethics Body Informs Blatter, Platini on Grounds for Ban

  • Sepp Blatter, Platini may now appeal the decision at FIFA
  • Platini was vying to replace Blatter as FIFA president

FIFA’s Ethics Committee has notified Joseph “Sepp” Blatter and European soccer boss Michel Platini of its reasons for banning them for eight years over an unauthorized 2 million-Swiss franc ($2 million) payment, according to a statement on the sporting body’s website.

“After receiving the grounds for the decisions, both officials may lodge an appeal with the FIFA Appeal Committee,” it said on Saturday. Agence France-Presse reported that UEFA President Platini will file his appeal on Monday.

Blatter, who oversaw FIFA for 17 years, and Platini were suspended from all soccer activities Oct. 8 after Swiss prosecutors opened an investigation into the payment. The move effectively ended Blatter’s presidency and delivered a blow to Platini’s chances in February’s elections for FIFA’s top job. Platini was handed another setback Dec. 11 when the Court of Arbitration for Sport rejected the appeal of his 90-day suspension.

Concerning the payment, Blatter and Platini have denied any wrongdoing, saying Blatter was fulfilling an oral contract between the two for services the Frenchman provided to FIFA between 1998 and 2002. The final payment on the contract was made in 2011.

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