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Blatter, Platini FIFA bans upheld - but sentence reduced

Soccer

Fallen world soccer moguls Sepp Blatter and Michel Platini have had their appeals against their exiles rejected by FIFA – but their bans have been reduced from eight to six years each.

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Outgoing FIFA president Blatter and UEFA president Michel Platini were banned in a ruling by the FIFA’s ethics committee on December 21 over a payment of $US2million made to Platini in 2011.

They had hearings before the appeal committee last week, with the sport’s governing body ruling overnight, Australian time.

“While agreeing with the principles and arguments presented by the adjudicatory chamber in its calculation of the sanction, the Appeal Committee … considered that Mr Platini’s and Mr Blatter’s activities and the services they had rendered to FIFA, UEFA and football in general over the years should deserve appropriate recognition as a mitigating factor,” a FIFA appeals committee statement said.

Blatter and Platini are expected to take their cases to the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) in Lausanne, Switzerland.

A new FIFA president is set to be elected on Friday, Swiss time, at an extraordinary FIFA congress in Zurich.

Platini said it was “insulting and shameful” and a “political decision” that his ban was upheld.

“The charges against me are baseless, built from the ground up and surreal in view of the facts and the explanations I gave during the hearing,” Platini said.

“I will go through all the possible appeals, starting with CAS. I will go to the end of my fight to show that I’m innocent.”

-Reuters

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