FIFA rejects Garcia appeal


Published: Tuesday 16th December 2014 by The News Editor

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FIFA ethics investigator Michael Garcia has lost his appeal against the findings which cleared Qatar and Russia to host the 2022 and 2018 World Cups.

Garcia last month claimed a statement by ethics judge Hans-Joachim Eckert on his report into bidding for the World Cups had contained “numerous materially incomplete and erroneous representations of the facts and conclusions” and announced he would appeal.

That appeal has now been declared inadmissible by FIFA’s appeals committee, who said Eckert’s statement was not a legally-binding decision and therefore could not be appealed against.

Eckert’s statement said any rule breaches by the bidding countries were “of very limited scope”, adding: “In particular, the effects of these occurrences on the bidding process as a whole were far from reaching any threshold that would require returning to the bidding process, let alone reopening it.”

A FIFA statement said: “The FIFA appeal committee, chaired by Larry Mussenden, has concluded that the appeal lodged by the chairman of the investigatory chamber, Michael J. Garcia, against the statement of the chairman of the adjudicatory chamber of the independent ethics committee, Hans-Joachim Eckert, is not admissible.

“The said statement about the report on the inquiry into the 2018/2022 FIFA World Cup bidding process does not constitute a decision and as such is neither legally binding nor appealable.”

Meanwhile, complaints by two World Cup bid whistleblowers that their cover had been blown by Eckert’s findings have also been rejected.

Phaedra Almajid, who worked for the Qatar 2022 bid team before losing her job in 2010, and Bonita Mersiades, who worked for Australia’s 2022 bid, complained that promises of confidentiality had been breached because his findings contained more than enough information to make them easily identifiable.

Published: Tuesday 16th December 2014 by The News Editor

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