FIFA trial: US jury convicts two ex-soccer bosses

first_imgJose Maria Marin, former head of Brazil’s Football ConfederationNew York, United States | AFP | A US jury convicted two South American ex-soccer bosses of corruption on Friday but will return after Christmas to deliberate on the fate of a third defendant in the FIFA trial in New York.The panel returned guilty verdicts against Jose Maria Marin, former head of Brazil’s Football Confederation and Juan Angel Napout, former head of Paraguayan football, on the sixth day of deliberations following an extraordinary seven-week trial.Marin, 85, was convicted on six of seven counts, and Napout, 59, on three out of five, in connection with bestowing television and marketing rights to soccer matches.But the jury said they had not yet reached consensus on former Peru boss Manuel Burga, who faces one count of racketeering conspiracy. They will return to resume deliberations on Tuesday, after the Christmas holiday.The trial in a Brooklyn federal court exposed systemic criminal activity at the heart of the world’s most popular sport, two and a half years after the United States unveiled the largest graft scandal in the history of world soccer.Government prosecutors indicted 42 officials and marketing executives, and the sports company Traffic detailed 92 alleged crimes to the tune of more than $200 million, but so far only these three defendants have faced trial.Marin and Napout were convicted of racketeering conspiracy under US law penalizing criminal organization — charges that have jailed mafia bosses — for accepting bribes in exchange for bestowing television and marketing rights to matches.They betrayed no emotion as they heard the verdicts. Napout’s family and wife, visibly nervous, were the only relatives of the defendants in court Friday.Prosecutors said they were blinded by greed into accepting more than $17 million in bribes — Napout $10.5 million, Marin $6.55 million.Juan Angel Napout, former head of Paraguayan football– Sentences pending –In damning evidence, Marin, was recorded talking about taking bribes by associate turned US government cooperating witness, businessman Jose Hawilla, who wore a wire. The Brazilian was acquitted only of one count of money laundering conspiracy, in relation to the Brazil Cup. He was convicted on two others, as well as of wire fraud and racketeering conspiracies.Napout was convicted on one count of racketeering conspiracy and two counts each of wire fraud conspiracy. He was acquitted on two counts of money laundering conspiracy.The US government told jurors that Burga, 60, agreed to receive bribes but never received them because he was under investigation at home in Peru for money laundering.Judge Pamela Chen will now have to determine the sentences. Each count faces a maximum penalty of 20 years behind bars.The defense has the right to appeal.Proceedings lifted the lid on the life of privilege, luxury and excess enjoyed by members of FIFA’s executive committee — of personal chauffeurs, private jets and “presidential treatment,” luxury hotels, meetings in idyllic resorts in the Bahamas or Mauritius, and even cruises on the Danube for wives, children and grandchildren.The defendants mounted little case, leaving their lawyers to claim that while there was indisputable corruption at FIFA, nothing suggested their clients were directly involved. None of the defendants took the stand in their own defense.The government amassed 30 million pages of evidence and cut plea deals with a string of culprits, including Argentinian-Italian marketing executive Alejandro Burzaco, who testified during the trial, after pleading guilty and agreeing to forfeit $21 million.Of the 42 individuals indicted, 24 have pleaded guilty — two of whom have already been sentenced by Chen. Fifteen remain in their own countries, including Brazilian football confederation president Marco Polo Del Nero, who was last week banned from soccer for 90 days as part of FIFA’s own investigation into corruption.Share on: WhatsApplast_img read more

Mallard’s Team of the Week — Nelson & District Credit Union Puck Toss Team

first_imgOn Nelson and District Credit Union Member Appreciation Night at the recent Nelson Leafs KIJHL game vs Castlegar Rebels, Credit Union invited previous Puck Toss winners back for a chance to win an NDCU term deposit.A one of the busiest games of the season, where Credit Union members were invited to present their NDCU MEMBER CARD debit card for a discounted admission, Kaleb Percival came away as the bigger winner of the $1000 NDCU term deposit during the Puck-4-Bucks puck toss. Mallard’s Source for sports would like to salute all of the season Puck-4-Bucks puck toss winners with Team of the Week honours.Thanks to all the members that came down to the NDCC and enjoyed the game, and the puck-toss participants for the added excitement.last_img

CALIFORNIA CHROME LEADS LANDSLIDE ECLIPSE AWARD RESULTS AS SEVEN SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA-BASED HORSES TAKE HOME EIGHT ECLIPSE TROPHIES SATURDAY NIGHT

first_imgARCADIA, Calif. (Jan. 22, 2017)–Headed by Horse of the Year California Chrome, Southern California-based horses fairly dominated last night’s Eclipse Awards Dinner at Gulfstream Park, as seven horses took home a total of eight Eclipse trophies. Not only did the legendary 6-year-old California-bred son of Lucky Pulpit win for the second time in the Horse of the Year category, he was also voted Eclipse Champion Older Dirt Male as well.“Chrome,” who began his 2016 campaign for trainer Art Sherman with an authoritative victory in Santa Anita’s Grade II San Pasqual Stakes on Jan. 9, would go on to win six consecutive races, including the Grade I Awesome Again Stakes here on Oct. 1, before running second by a half length to Arrogate in the $6 million Breeders’ Cup Classic at Santa Anita Nov. 5.A winner of the 2014 Santa Anita and Kentucky Derbies, California Chrome is tentatively scheduled to retire to stud at co-owner Taylor Made Farms in Kentucky following next Saturday’s $12 million Pegasus World Cup Invitational at Gulfstream.Bob Baffert’s Santa Anita-based Arrogate, who followed his record-shattering win in the Grade I Travers Stakes at Saratoga on Aug. 27 with his Breeders’ Cup Classic victory over California Chrome in only his sixth career start, was voted Eclipse Champion 3-year-old Male.Owned by Juddmonte Farms, Arrogate, who completed his final work in preparation for a rematch with California Chrome yesterday morning at Santa Anita, was a perfect three for three at The Great Race Place in 2016, beginning with his maiden special weight win on June 5.In addition to Arrogate, Baffert also tasted Eclipse victory with Drefong, who was voted Eclipse Champion Male Sprinter. Unbeaten in three starts here last year, Drefong capped his championship season with a 1 ¼ length win in the Breeders’ Cup Sprint Nov. 5.“It just goes to show you how tough it is out here in California,” said Baffert this morning from Clockers’ Corner. “We work very hard to compete at the top level, win big races and championships…that’s always our goal. I’m proud of our team and what we’ve accomplished.”In a masterstroke that has been commonplace throughout his incredible Hall of Fame career, trainer Richard Mandella oversaw Santa Anita-based Beholder’s fifth and final racing campaign, which was culminated by an epic nose victory over previously undefeated Songbird in the Breeders’ Cup Distaff on Nov. 4. That, along with two other graded victories at Santa Anita, enabled the Spendthrift Farm color-bearer to be named Eclipse Champion Older Dirt Female–making her a four-time Eclipse Champion.Undefeated in seven starts leading into the Distaff, Santa Anita-based Songbird began 2016 by streaking to four consecutive victories; in the Grade II Las Virgenes on Feb. 6, the Grade III Santa Ysabel on March 5, the Grade I Santa Anita Oaks on April 9 and the Grade II Summertime Oaks on June 18, by a combined 20 ½ lengths.Owned by Rick Porter’s Fox Hill Farms and trained by Jerry Hollendorfer, Songbird’s nose defeat to Beholder in the Breeders’ Cup Distaff will no doubt go down as one of the greatest Distaffs of all-time, rivaling the 1989 showdown between Personal Ensign and Winning Colors.In what trainer Ian Kruljac, 28, described as “a once-in-a-lifetime day,” his prized filly, Finest City, won yesterday’s Grade II Santa Monica Stakes, while Kruljac’s father, Eric, was on-hand at Gulfstream to pinch hit for his son and receive Finest City’s Eclipse Award as Champion Female Sprinter.Based throughout the year at Santa Anita, Finest City, a 4-year-old filly by City Zip, capped 2016 with a three quarter length victory in the Breeders’ Cup Filly & Mare Sprint here on Nov. 5. Owned by Seltzer Thoroughbreds, Finest City was 8-2-2-2 on the year and she amassed annual earnings of $823,200.Like Kruljac, trainer Peter Eurton brought home his first Eclipse Award last night as well, as his Champagne Room was voted Champion 2-year-old Filly. Based at Santa Anita, the Kentucky-bred daughter of Broken Vow broke her maiden in the Grade II Sorrento Stakes Aug. 6 at Del Mar and culminated her freshman season with an upset win in the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies here Nov. 5. Owned by Ciaglia, Exline-Border, Gulliver Racing, R. Christiansen and Sharon Alesia, Champagne Room ended 2016 with a 5-2-1-1 mark and earnings of $1,286,600.In addition to eight equine Eclipse Awards, Santa Anita-based Baffert and jockey Mike Smith were also finalists in their respective categories.Suffice to say, Santa Anita was The Great Race Place to be in 2016!last_img read more

Cockpit Country Boundary Named… No Mining in Protected Area

first_img He noted that while the country forgoes the exploitation of millions of tonnes of high-grade bauxite and limestone with potential earnings of billions of United States dollars, “we cannot put a price tag on the loss to our water resources and biodiversity”. Story Highlights With regards to the forested areas, the Cabinet has decided to extend the existing Cockpit Country, Litchfield-Matheson’s Run and the Fyffe and Rankine Forest Reserves to take in the broadleaf forests which are in close proximity to these areas. Prime Minister, the Most Hon. Andrew Holness, yesterday (November 21), announced the boundary of the Cockpit Country, while declaring that no mining will be permitted in the protected area. Prime Minister, the Most Hon. Andrew Holness, yesterday (November 21), announced the boundary of the Cockpit Country, while declaring that no mining will be permitted in the protected area.Addressing the House of Representatives, the Prime Minister said in this regard, the Mining Act and any existing mining licences will be amended to close these areas to mining.“The Government is of the view that this area is too valuable, in terms of its ecological and hydrological importance and uniqueness, to allow mining, which may result in permanent and irreversible harm and deprive future generations of the benefit of this national asset,” Mr. Holness said.He noted that while the country forgoes the exploitation of millions of tonnes of high-grade bauxite and limestone with potential earnings of billions of United States dollars, “we cannot put a price tag on the loss to our water resources and biodiversity”.The Prime Minister said, however, that mining and other activities may take place outside the protected area.“The Cabinet mandated that major development activities within the proximate environs of the Cockpit Country Protected Area will be subject to rigorous processes of decision making, including approval by Cabinet, taking into account the provisions of the relevant legislation,” he added.Cabinet, in determining the boundary, took into account the closed broadleaf forest cover/primary forest; the rich biodiversity; the hydrology; and important historical, cultural sites.The Prime Minister said the area to be protected will include existing forest reserves, significant hydrological and ecological features and cultural and heritage sites.“This area comprises approximately 74,726 hectares and will be referred to as the Cockpit Country Protected Area and will be protected under specific legislation as advised by the Attorney General,” he explained.Mr. Holness noted that a detailed description of the boundary of the Cockpit Country and the Cockpit Country Protected Area as recognised by the State will be provided by the Forestry Department after consultations with the relevant public-sector agencies and the necessary ground truthing, a term used in various fields to refer to information provided by direct observation (empirical evidence), as opposed to information provided by inference.In relation to the hydrological resources, the Water Resources Authority identified and advised the Cabinet on hydrological features within the environs of the Cockpit Country that required protection. In this regard, caves in the north-east, in the Rio Bueno watershed, and in the north-west, have been included in the area to be protected.With regards to the forested areas, the Cabinet has decided to extend the existing Cockpit Country, Litchfield-Matheson’s Run and the Fyffe and Rankine Forest Reserves to take in the broadleaf forests which are in close proximity to these areas.As it relates to the historical and cultural sites within the area, the Ministry with responsibility for culture and the Jamaica National Heritage Trust have advised that sufficient safeguards exist under the Jamaica National Heritage Trust Act to protect the cultural and historical sites and artefacts in the area.“We have gone further to request the portfolio Ministry with responsibility for culture to fast-track the identification of other important cultural/historical sites and artefacts in the area with a view to protecting them under the law. In addition, the Ministry has been asked to seek the nomination of the Cockpit Country Protected Area as a World Heritage site under UNESCO,” the Prime Minister informed.In addition, to ensure the effective management of the Cockpit Country Protected Area, and in recognition of the rights of private landowners, the Government is to continue to partner with private landowners, local groups and other stakeholders, including the Accompong Maroons, in the development of a comprehensive Management Plan for the area.Mr. Holness said implementation of this plan will require dedicated resources from the national budget as well as donor support, adding that the plan will be subject to Cabinet approval, following which it will be tabled in Parliament.last_img read more