Blatter, as FIFA president, authorized a payment of 2 million Swiss francs ($2 million) to FIFA Coins Platini which was found to be unethical and a conflict of interest.But following hearings last week, an in-house appeal committee comprising members of federations voting in Friday’s presidential election decided to relax the suspensions.
The committee is headed by Larry Mussenden of Bermuda, who is currently campaigning to win a May vote to become president of CONCACAF and a FIFA vice president.”The appeal committee considered that Mr. Platini’s and Mr. Blatter’s activities and the services they had rendered to FIFA, UEFA and football in general over the years should deserve appropriate recognition as a mitigating factor,” FIFA said in a statement.
Blatter said in a statement that he was “deeply disappointed” with the verdict. Having hoped to be cleared in time to preside over the electoral congress on Friday, Blatter might have run out of time for an urgent CAS hearing.Both Blatter and Platini have constantly denied wrongdoing and claimed they had a verbal deal for additional salary that former France great Platini would receive for working.
Blatter’s presidential adviser from 1999-2002.Platini had been the FIFA 18 Mobile Coins leading candidate to succeed Blatter in FIFA’s emergency election before the payment was revealed in September.”The reasons given against me are baseless, trumped up and surreal, given the facts and explanations that I gave during the hearing of the appeals board,” Platini said in a statement released through his legal team.