BERLIN – FIFA president Gianni Infantino has defended himself to member nations of the world football governing body after meetings with Switzerland’s attorney general resulted in a criminal investigation against him.
In a letter to the 211 FIFA members, seen by dpa, Infantino strongly denied wrong-doing but admitted “we also have to acknowledge that this development has already caused considerable damage to FIFA as an organisation and to myself as its President.”
Swiss prosecutors recently opened a case against Infantino for meetings he held with the country’s attorney general Michael Lauber.
Possible offences by Infantino include abuse of public office, breach of official secrecy, assisting offenders and incitement to these acts, the Swiss judicial oversight authority said.
Infantino denies this and insisted there would be cooperation with the authorities.
“It is, obviously, also very clear that nothing even remotely illegal happened or could have happened at these meetings,” he wrote. “The very thought of it is absurd.”
Infantino also explained the charges had been brought “because some anonymous complaints were filed against me in the canton of Bern.
“Not knowing the content of those anonymous complaints, we can only speculate as to why they were filed and who is behind them. Hopefully, the facts will emerge one day.”