US Sends Formal Extradition Request for FIFA Officials

The United States has officially asked Switzerland to extradite seven International Federation of Association Football (FIFA) officials detained on corruption charges in May, Swiss authorities said according to BBC.

Formal extradition requests for the seven officials were submitted on Wednesday, the Swiss Federal Office of Justice (FOJ) announced in a statement on Thursday.

The seven, considered top FIFA executives, are among a total of 14 officials indicted on charges "rampant, systemic, and deep-rooted" corruption. 

The arrests in Zurich and subsequent charges follow an intensive inquiry by the US Federal Bureau of Investigation. 

According to FOJ, an extradition hearing will be held for the seven officials under the auspices of Zurich police, working on the Justice Office's behalf. 

Officials and their lawyers will have 14 days to respond to the request, though may be extended "if sufficient grounds exist," FOJ said. 

Following a hearing, the FOJ will give its decision "within a few weeks," but warned of the possibility its ruling could be overturned in both Swiss criminal court or federal supreme court. 

The FIFA corruption scandal broke last month amidst Palestinian Authority efforts to have Israel booted from the international soccer association. The PA eventually backed down and dropped the proposal

Source: http://www.israelnationalnews.com/News/News.aspx/197599

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