Swiss prosecutor to open criminal proceedings against FIFA president Infantino
Football – UEFA Congress – Beurs van Berlage Conference Centre, Amsterdam, Netherlands – March 3, 2020. FIFA President Gianni Infantino after his speech during the UEFA Congress. [REUTERS/Yves Herman/File Photo]

A Swiss Special Federal Public Prosecutor has announced he will begin criminal proceedings against Fifa President Gianni Infantino.

The prosecutor, Stefan Keller has also applied to have the immunity of for Switzerland’s Attorney General Michael Lauber, to grant him the authority to conduct criminal proceedings against the official.

Fifa President does not enjoy immunity and therefore Keller will immediately commence criminal proceedings although all the individuals benefit from presumption of innocence until proven guilty.

Keller will also look into the conduct of Infantino’s childhood friend, Rinaldo Arnold, who is currently the Chief Public Prosecutor of the Upper Valais in Switzerland.

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According to a Swiss newspaper, Tribune de Geneve, Infantino was “worried” about this investigation and wrote to Arnold.

A statement from the office of the Special Prosecutor, AB-BA said Thursday: “Stefan Keller has now completed his examination of two such requests. He has concluded that, in connection with the meetings between Attorney General Michael Lauber and the Fifa President Gianni Infantino and the Chief Public Prosecutor of the Upper Valais, their indications of criminal conduct.”

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It added: “This concerns abuse of public office (Article 312 of the Swiss Criminal Code), breach of official secrecy (Article 320 of the Swiss Criminal Code), assisting offenders (Article 305 of the Swiss Criminal Code) and incitement to these acts. Additional criminal acts and the commencement of further proceedings remain reserved.”

Lauber, the Swiss attorney general offered to resign Friday last week.

Lauber, who denies wrong-doing, is accused of having secret meetings, where he took no notes, with FIFA president Infantino during investigations into football corruption.

In a statement to the media, Lauber said: “However, the fact that I am not believed as the attorney general is detrimental to the federal prosecution office.” 

The corruption cases include at least 25 criminal proceedings, some targeting former FIFA president Sepp Blatter, and former UEFA president Michel Platini.

All these figures have not been charged and deny wrongdoing. Infantino has described those complaints as “quite absurd.”

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