Former FIFA and CONCACAF official Jeffrey Webb pleaded not guilty on Saturday to charges of racketeering and bribery in United States federal court as part of the FIFA corruption scandal that rocked the soccer world and has garnered constant headlines for nearly two months now.
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Upon pleading not guilty, Webb, 50, posted a $10 million bond upon his arraignment. He also surrendered three passports — two from the United Kingdom and one from the Cayman Islands — and will wear an electronic monitoring device as condition of his release.
Webb was the first of the nine current and former FIFA officials arrested to agree to be extradited to the US, which many saw as a sign he may have been looking to join fellow former FIFA and CONCACAF honcho Chuck Blazer in helping federal investigators build their case against the rest of football’s world governing body.
Webb, 50, was among seven FIFA officials detained in Switzerland. The rest are fighting extradition.
Prosecutors allege the defendants plotted to pay bribes of more than $150 million – tied to the award of broadcasting and hosting rights for the World Cup and other tournaments – over a 24-year period.
Following the indictment, Webb received a provisional ban and was replaced as the FIFA vice president from the North and Central American and Caribbean region.
The rest of the soccer officials and marketing executives arrested in the case are currently fighting extradition to the US.