Fifa official Jeffrey Webb pleads not guilty to corruption charges

US court hears allegations of racketeering conspiracy, fraud and money laundering

Jeffrey Webb, one of seven high-ranking Fifa officials who were arrested in Switzerland on corruption charges, pleaded not guilty in US federal court on Saturday.

Following his extradition to the US, the former Fifa vice-president and president of the Concacaf regional soccer federation appeared at a hearing in Brooklyn, New York.

A US lawyer for Mr Webb declined to comment.

Mr Webb faces US charges of racketeering conspiracy, wire fraud and money laundering.


He was released on a $10 million (about €9.2 million) bond co-signed by family members.

The four co-signers present in court, his wife and her parents and grandmother, were advised by the judge of the gravity of their financial undertaking.

The bond was secured by 10 properties, three cars, a case of jewellery and watches belonging to Webb and his wife, and financial assets, including his $401,000 (about €370,0000) retirement account.

The 50-year-old Cayman Islands national is among nine soccer officials and five marketing executives charged by the US justice department for allegedly exploiting the sport for their own gain through bribes of more than $150 million (about €139 million) over 24 years.

Under the terms of his release, Mr Webb surrendered his three passports and his wife surrendered her passport.

He will be under house detention and must remain within 32km of the courthouse.

His movements will be monitored electronically and he will be required to seek written permission from the FBI to go anywhere.

Zurich arrests

Mr Webb was one of seven soccer officials arrested in Zurich on May 27th, two days before Fifa’s annual congress, as authorities unveiled a case that roiled the soccer world.

US authorities say their investigation, parallelling a separate Swiss inquiry, has exposed complex money laundering schemes, millions of dollars in untaxed incomes and tens of millions of dollars in offshore accounts held by Fifa officials.

Mr Webb has been provisionally banned from his posts at Fifa and Concacaf. No date has been set for his trial.

According to the indictment, Mr Webb used his influential positions to solicit bribes from sports marketing companies in exchange for the commercial rights to soccer matches.

One $500,000 (about €462,000) payment allegedly went to build a swimming pool at Mr Webb's house in Loganville, Georgia, according to the indictment.

On July 3rd, Cayman Islands officials announced separate charges against Mr Webb in an unrelated health care fraud case.