Skip to main content

Bin Hammam's FIFA ban overturned

updated 8:11 AM EDT, Thu July 19, 2012
Mohamed bin Hammam was president of the Asian Football Confederation between August 2002 and August 2011.
Mohamed bin Hammam was president of the Asian Football Confederation between August 2002 and August 2011.
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) overturn Mohamed bin Hammam's FIFA ban
  • The Qatari was banned from FIFA for life on bribery charges last year
  • CAS outlined how overturning the ban was not a declaration of Bin Hammam's innocence
  • Bin Hammam was suspended by the Asian Football Conderation earlier this week

(CNN) -- The lifetime ban imposed by global governing body FIFA on the former head of Asian football has been annulled.

The Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) upheld Mohamed bin Hammam's appeal against the punishment handed to him after being found guilty of bribery by FIFA's ethics committee in July 2011.

The Qatari was accused of issuing bribes to members of the Caribbean Football Union (CFU), including former North American soccer head Jack Warner, in exchanges for votes during his ill-fated FIFA presidential campaign against current chief Sepp Blatter.

The CAS decision to lift the sanction imposed on Bin Hammam was based on a lack of evidence, though the body stressed the 63-year-old had not been found innocent.

Kickbacks and cover-ups at FIFA?
Goal-line technology approved by FIFA
Didier Drogba welcomed to China
John Terry cleared of racial abuse

"This conclusion should not be taken to diminish the significance of its finding that it is more likely than not that Mr. Bin Hammam was the source of the monies that were brought into Trinidad and Tobago and eventually distributed at the meeting by Mr Warner," said the CAS statement.

"His conduct, in collaboration with and most likely induced by Mr Warner, may not have complied with the highest ethical standards that should govern the world of football and other sports.

"The panel is doing no more than concluding that the evidence is insufficient in that it does not permit the majority of the panel to reach the standard of comfortable satisfaction in relation to the matters on which the Appellant was charged.

"It is a situation of 'case not proven', coupled with concern on the part of the panel that the FIFA investigation was not complete or comprehensive enough to fill the gaps in the record."

The CAS verdict was greeted with unease by FIFA.

"FIFA has noted with concern the decision announced today by CAS in the Mohamed Bin Hammam case," read a statement from the Zurich-based body, which recently appointed two crimefighters as part of ongoing reforms aimed at improving the organization's governance.

Former United States attorney Michael J Garcia and German judge Hans-Joachim Eckert have been put in place to tackle the allegations of wrongdoing which have plagued FIFA in recent years.

"The CAS panel notes that 'FIFA was in the process of reforming its ethics committee and that, in the event new evidence relating to the present case was discovered, it would be possible to re-open the case, in order to complete the factual background properly and to establish if Mr Bin Hammam has committed any violation of the FIFA Code of Ethics,'" added FIFA's statement.

Earlier this week, Bin Hammam was provisionally suspended by the Asian Football Confederation, the organization of which he was president between 2002 and 2011, following an audit of the body's accounts.

The suspension related to payments in and out of AFC bank accounts during Bin Hammam's tenure.

ADVERTISEMENT
Part of complete coverage on
updated 7:51 AM EDT, Fri August 15, 2014
Last season Jose Mourinho wrote off the title of hopes of his "little horse" -- but now he has a squad primed to dethrone Manchester City.
updated 2:58 PM EDT, Thu August 14, 2014
Luis Suarez will have to wait until late October to make his competitive Barcelona debut his ban for biting an opponent was partially upheld.
updated 12:49 PM EDT, Thu August 14, 2014
Can Louis van Gaal cut it at Manchester United? Will Bayern conquer all in Germany? Is this PSG's year to win the Champions League?
updated 6:12 AM EDT, Thu August 7, 2014
It's been a difficult year for Barcelona on and off the pitch, and the signing of Luis Suarez has only increased the prospect of more controversy.
updated 10:35 AM EDT, Mon August 11, 2014
Germany striker Miroslav Klose, who scored a total of 16 goals at four World Cup finals, has announced his retirement from international football.
updated 7:45 AM EDT, Thu July 31, 2014
Cultural y Deportivo Leonesa line up in their tuxedo kit.
When celebrating an important anniversary, it's always good to look your best. At least that's theory for a Spanish football team's preseason tuxedo kit.
updated 7:03 AM EDT, Wed July 30, 2014
While many top European clubs are targeting the U.S. market, French football is setting its sights on expanding into Asia -- with China playing a key role.
updated 8:29 AM EDT, Sun July 27, 2014
Major League Soccer has snared another big name from England with former Chelsea star Frank Lampard committing his future to New York City FC.
updated 12:56 PM EDT, Wed July 23, 2014
Europe's top clubs have booked a summer holiday to the U.S. -- but this is business not pleasure as they look to cash in on the World Cup afterglow.
updated 2:28 PM EDT, Tue July 22, 2014
Brazil's new coach Dunga won the World Cup as a player in 1994.
Former World Cup-winning captain Dunga is appointed coach of Brazil's national team for the second time, charged with restoring national pride.
updated 10:20 AM EDT, Tue July 22, 2014
Colombia's World Cup star James Rodriguez continues Real Madrid's long tradition of signing "Galacticos."
updated 6:07 AM EDT, Mon July 21, 2014
Germany's World Cup-winning captain Philipp Lahm has decided to go out at the top by announcing his retirement from international football.
ADVERTISEMENT