BRISBANE, Australia — A top figure in international soccer official allegedly stole a $462,000 donation the Football Federation of Australia gave to his Caribbean football organization in 2010.
At a time, Fairfax media reported, Jack Warner — a former vice-president of the international football federation FIFA — was being lobbied by the FFA to back its bid to host the world cup, which ultimately failed.
The news comes days after Warner resigned from his position as national security minister of Trinidad and Tobago having been accused by an ethics panel at CONCACAF, the Caribbean, North and Central American international football body, of enriching himself through fraud.
Warner is a former CONCACAF president and FIFA executive committee member.
NBC wrote that CONCACAF released a 113 page report into allegations of financial mismanagement by Warner and ex-general secretary Chuck Blazer.
Contained in the report are accusations that Warner:
- compensated himself with at least $15 million of CONCACAF funds after his last contract expired in July 1998;
- did not disclose to CONCACAF or FIFA that a $25.9 million Center of Excellence, which is no longer as asset of CONCACAF, was built on land owned by his companies; and
- mismanaged nearly $1 million in FIFA funds slated for a reconstruction project in Haiti.
Suspicions of Warner's involvement in fraud stretch back years, and consequently his appointment to high office in Trinidad and Tobago 11 months ago had "raised eyebrows," NBC wrote.
He resigned as CONCACAF president in 2011 after being accused of attempting to bribe Caribbean delegates $40,000 each to vote for then-Asian confederation head Mohamed bin Hammam in the election for president of FIFA.
Warner denies any wrongdoing, the BBC reported.
It quoted Trinidad and Tobago Prime Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar as saying that Warner had offered to resign from her cabinet and she had accepted:
"I wish to thank Mr Warner for his service to the government and people of Trinidad and Tobago."
Meanwhile, the finding that Warner stole the Australian organization's money by a panel of former judges raised "fresh questions" in this country about the practice of awarding generous grants to soccer organizations headed by influential FIFA officials.