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Marketplace Morning Report

Justice department moves on FIFA corruption

Kai Ryssdal, Austin Cross, and Robert Garrova May 27, 2015
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Early this morning Zurich time, Swiss police arrested seven top officials from FIFA, the international organization governing soccer. What’s more, Attorney General Loretta Lynch announced today that the Department of Justice will indict some FIFA executives, including former Vice President Jack Warner.   

“They corrupted the business of worldwide soccer to serve their interests and to enrich themselves,” Lynch said in a statement. The U.S. charges include racketeering, money laundering and wire fraud.

In all, 14 people have been indicted, but not the man at the top, longtime FIFA President Sepp Blatter.

“He’s basically said to have been running sort of a corrupt organization for the better part of two decades,” says Edward Derse, a senior vice president at Universal Sports Network.

Blatter and other FIFA executives are known for their luxurious lifestyles, too.

“Blatter has a huge expense budget. He lives very well,” Derse says.

But even though it looks as if he might soon be elected to another term as FIFA president, Blatter will undoubtedly have a lot of questions to answer as part of the DOJ’s investigation.  

“I think it’s going to change things a lot for FIFA,” Derse says. “I mean, clearly, you know, U.S. Attorney General Loretta Lynch said that this is not going to stop here.”  

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