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Football chief faces 'bribe' probe

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Claims of corruption made against Fifa vice-president Issa Hayatou are to be investigated

Claims of corruption made against Fifa vice-president Issa Hayatou in a BBC documentary are to be investigated by the International Olympic Committee.

Hayatou is also an IOC member and the Panorama programme, broadcast on Monday night, claimed he was given a bribe worth £10,000 in 1995 by the now-defunct marketing company ISL.

The IOC said in a statement: “The IOC has taken note of the allegations made by BBC Panorama and will ask the programme makers to pass on any evidence they may have to the appropriate authorities. The IOC has a zero tolerance against corruption and will refer the matter to the IOC ethics commission.”

Three people were accused by Panorama of taking bribes – African confederation president Hayatou, whose vote England’s campaign to host the 2018 World Cup had high hopes of capturing, Brazil’s Ricardo Terra Teixeira and Nicolas Leoz of Paraguay.

Fifa vice-president Jack Warner is alleged to have tried to buy World Cup tickets to pass on to touts – although the programme accepted he did not actually do so.

According to Panorama he “ordered (2010 World Cup) tickets costing 84,240 US dollars from the Fifa ticket office but the deal subsequently fell through”.

The four men are all part of the 22-man committee who will vote on the 2018 and 2022 hosts on Thursday.

Fifa released a statement insisting that the Panorama documentary had simply covered old ground.

The statement read: “The matters concerning the case “ISL/ISMM” which are referred to date back many years ago and were investigated by the relevant authorities in Switzerland. In its verdict of 26 June 2008, the Criminal Court of Zug had not convicted any Fifa officials. It is therefore important to stress again the fact that no Fifa officials were accused of any criminal offence in these proceedings.

“Furthermore, it is important to recall that the decision was made on matters which took place prior to the year 2000 and there has been no court conviction against Fifa. The investigation and the case are definitely closed.”

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