Former FIFA president Sepp Blatter will meet a Swiss district attorney for a 3rd straight day, following a 2nd conference Tuesday in a probe surrounding a suspect payment to Michel Platini.
Former world football chief Blatter is being examined over a 2 million Swiss franc ($ 2.2 million, 1.85 million euro FIFA payment in 2011 to Platini, who was then in charge of European football’s governing body UEFA.
In last hearings in the examination, Blatter met a federal district attorney from the Office of the Attorney General (OAG of Switzerland on Monday in Zurich, where FIFA has its head office.
Due to Blatter’s vulnerable health, he can just remain for a number of hours at a time.
He returned on Tuesday to continue the hearing for an additional 90 minutes, and his spokesperson Thomas Renggli stated later on that Blatter would return once again on Wednesday– and potentially on Thursday too.
“Mr. Blatter is happy, but not with the prosecutors’ questions. It’s a bit ridiculous. The suspicions about him are a little absurd,” Renggli informed AFP.
Under the Swiss Code of Criminal Procedure, in prolonged and intricate procedures, suspects “are questioned one last time before the investigation is concluded”, the OAG stated.
While Platini’s last interview with the district attorney remained in March, Blatter’s hearing was delayed to August due to the retired Swiss football administrator’s health.
He invested 2 months in health center in December and January after going through heart surgical treatment, and in March was convalescing in a center.
Joseph “Sepp” Blatter signed up with FIFA in 1975, became its basic secretary in 1981 and the president of world football’s governing body in 1998.
He was required to stand down in 2015 and was prohibited by FIFA for 8 years, later on lowered to 6, over principles breaches for authorising what district attorneys called a “disloyal payment” to Platini– simply put, one made in his own interests instead of FIFA’s.
“The criminal proceedings against Joseph Blatter are now being conducted on suspicion of fraud, breach of trust and unfaithful business management,” the OAG stated in a declaration ahead of Monday’s hearing.
In a declaration ahead of the hearing, Blatter firmly insisted the payment to previous France and Juventus assaulting midfielder Platini, 66, was above board.
“It was based on an oral contract that regulated Platini’s advisory activities for FIFA between 1998 and 2002,” he stated.
“The process was correctly declared as a late payment of wages.”