DETROIT - Caribbean football officials are
unhappy about the appointment of former FBI head Louis Freeh (pictured) to
lead FIFA's investigation into bribery allegations and have
urged the ruling body to replace him.
FIFA has hired the ex-FBI chief's investigative agency,
Freeh Group International Europe, to work on the probe and
Caribbean federations have been asked to attend interviews in
Miami on Tuesday and Wednesday, a Caribbean football source told
Reuters on Monday.
But the choice of a high-profile American to head the probe
has led at least one Caribbean football federation to ask
Blatter to intervene.
"The investigation is tainted and biased and clearly has a
U.S. driven agenda," a federation official wrote in a letter to
FIFA seen by Reuters.
The official said there were "two America complainants, an
American investigator, an investigation and an interrogation
being conducted on American soil while FIFA remains a Swiss
registered entity and none of the persons under investigation
being U.S. citizens"
The letter asked FIFA President Sepp Blatter to replace
Freeh with a "truly independent investigator and secure a
neutral venue for the interview of any Caribbean Football Union
member other than the United States of America."
Three members of the Caribbean Football Union (CFU) -
president Jack Warner and staff members Debbie Minguell and
Jason Sylvester - were provisionally suspended by FIFA's Ethics Committee pending a full inquiry into the events surrounding a
meeting in the Caribbean with Asian football chief Mohamed Bin
Qatari Bin Hammam, who was running against Blatter for FIFA
president at the time of the meeting, has also been suspended
following the bribery allegations.
All four suspended officials have insisted they are
The report to FIFA's Ethics Committee was initiated by
American Chuck Blazer, general secretary of CONCACAF, the
regional body for football in North and Central America and the
Blazer worked with Chicago-based lawyer John Collins on the
dossier and with an American now leading the investigation and
the interviews to be held in Miami, Blatter has been asked to
Barbadian Lisle Austin, who replaced Warner as interim
president of CONCACAF, was suspended by that body's executive
committee on Friday and Honduran Alfredo Hawit was appointed to
With Warner and Austin suspended, CONCACAF, which has been
controlled by Trinidadian Warner and his Caribbean allies over
the past two decades, has just one Caribbean representative on
the executive committee.
Jamaican Horace Burrell remains a member of the executive
but his name has not featured in statements, such as the one
suspending Austin, which have been issued in the name of the
'majority of the executive'.
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