Sepp Blatter, former president of the world football governing body, FIFA, was in court today, June 8, 2022, to testify over the illegal payment he made to former UEFA president Michel Platini.
The 86-year-old Swiss football administrator was escorted to the Federal Criminal Court in Bellinzona, Switzerland by his daughter Corinne. Sepp Blatter was so weak that he walked from his car to the courtroom with the aide of his daughter.
After he got to the court where he was expected to explain to the judge why he paid 2 million Swiss francs to Michel Platini in 2011, the former FIFA president could not speak much.
Sepp Blatter managed to tell the court in a whisper that he was battling chest pain which is making it difficult for him to speak. “The pain will come back and I am having difficulty breathing,” he added.
Futballnews gathered that it was so obvious that the once most powerful individual in world football was in pain that the judge had to permit him not to speak contrary to plan. The trial had to be delayed due to his health concern.
As it stands, Blatter is expected to return to the court on Thursday, June 9, 2022, to continue with the trial which is expected to end on June 22, 2022.
As for Michel Platini, the 66-year-old French ex-footballer and his legal representatives tried to convince the court to move the trial to a local court after failing to dismiss Fifa’s civil claim against him and Sepp Blatter to recoup the 2 million Swiss francs. The court turned them down.
They would have to wait for Blatter’s testimony on Thursday and the court’s final verdict on the fraud case in July 2022.
What we know about Sepp Blatter and Michel Platini’s fraud scandal
In 2015, Sepp Blatter, the then FIFA president, and Michel Platini, the then president of UEFA, were banned from football after it was confirmed that they committed fraud.
Afterward, a Swiss prosecutor, claimed that Sepp Blatter who was FIFA president from June 8, 1998, to December 21, 2015, illegally paid Michel Platini who was UEFA president from 26 January 2007 and 21 December 2015 the sum of 2 million Swiss francs which is equivalent to $2.08 million.
In 2021, both disgraced football administrators were dragged to court to clear their names. According to a statement from Sepp Blatter, the 2 million Swiss francs he paid to Platini was for his advisory work for Fifa between 1998 and 2002, adding that they both did no wrong.
A statement from the court said Platini “submitted to FIFA in 2011 an allegedly fictitious invoice for an (alleged) debt still existing for his activity as an adviser for FIFA in the years 1998 to 2002”.
Futballnews can confirm that the trial will continue until June 22. Afterward, the court is expected to make a verdict on the case on July 8, 2022.