FIFAgate: FIFA bans former Peruvian boss Burga for second time for bribery

April 4 – FIFA’s Ethics Committee has handed for Peruvian FA president Manuel Burga (pictured) a life ban from all football-related activity for a second time.

Burga, a former member of both the Conmebol Executive Committee and the FIFA Development Committee, in 2017 stood trial in Brooklyn with two other South American powerbrokers – Juan Napout, of Paraguay, and Jose Maria Marin, of Brazil.

Burga was charged with racketeering conspiracy and accused of having plotted to collect $4.4 million in bribes in exchange for marketing and broadcast rights to matches. He had denied all charges against him and was the only one of the three to be acquitted.

In July 2019 FIFA banned Burga with FIFA investigators arguing there was “overwhelming evidence” Burga got or had been promised $6.6 million in bribes linked to marketing deals for competitions including the Copa America and Copa Libertadores.

Burga appealed to the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) who partially upheld his appeal “on the basis of a violation of due process rights” and annulled his ban. However they referred the case back to FIFA for further investigation.

In issuing the new ban FIFA also fined Burga CHF1 million, “after having been determined to have participated in bribery schemes and accepted undue pecuniary advantages.”

“After having conducted a hearing and upon careful analysis of the evidence provided before the adjudicatory chamber, in addition to the evidence collected during the investigations conducted by the investigatory chamber in the applicable proceedings, the adjudicatory chamber was comfortably satisfied that Mr Burga Seoane had breached articles 13 (General rules of conduct), 15 (Loyalty), 19 (Conflicts of interest), 20 (Offering and accepting gifts or other benefits) and 21 (Bribery and corruption) of the FIFA Code of Ethics, 2012 edition,” said a FIFA statement.

After his acquittal by the Brooklyn jury in December 2017 Burga broke down in tears and said he would return to Peru and resume his career as a lawyer saying: “My history in soccer is finished.”

This time it looks like it really is finished.

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