Sports / Stars

FIFA donates 48 confiscated watches to charity

By Agence France-Presse (China Daily) Updated: 2015-11-28 08:18

Nearly 50 luxury watches confiscated from soccer officials who had received them as "gifts" ahead of the World Cup in Brazil have been donated to charity, FIFA's ethics committee said on Thursday.

The watches, estimated to be worth 25,000 Swiss francs ($24,400) apiece, were given to streetfootballworld, an international network of groups which uses soccer to help young people.

Ahead of last year's World Cup, the Brazilian Football Confederation handed out 65 gift bags each containing a Parmigiani timepiece to FIFA Executive Committee officials and members of the 32 competing associations.

The gifts created a furore at the time but now disgraced FIFA bosses, including president Sepp Blatter, denied any corruption.

However, the ethics committee's investigative branch has determined that the watches were "unauthorized gifts", and called on officials to hand them over.

It agreed not to open formal ethical proceedings against anyone who complied.

The ethics committee said in a statement its probe had determined that "from the initially intended 65 watches offered by the CBF to soccer officials, several officials had, in fact, not received a watch".

(China Daily 11/28/2015 page11)

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