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A disgraced top FIFA official admitted to accepting bribes in the World Cup bid process

Chuck Blazer before the 61st FIFA Congress in Zurich, Switzerland, in 2011.
Chuck Blazer before the 61st FIFA Congress in Zurich, Switzerland, in 2011.
Julian Finney/Getty Images
Libby Nelson is Vox's policy editor, leading coverage of how government action and inaction shape American life. Libby has more than a decade of policy journalism experience, including at Inside Higher Ed and Politico. She joined Vox in 2014.
  1. Chuck Blazer, a former member of FIFA's executive committee who became an FBI informant, pleaded guilty to taking bribes in the World Cup selection process, according to his guilty plea unsealed today.
  2. The bribery goes back to at least 1992, when Blazer agreed to "facilitate the acceptance of a bribe" in the selection process for the 1998 World Cup.
  3. He also admitted to agreeing to accept bribes in the selection process for the 2010 World Cup, held in South Africa.
  4. Blazer also said he and others "agreed to accept bribes and kickbacks" for broadcast rights, the focus of last week's indictments.

The key section of the court transcript

Blazer was an informant for the US investigation

Blazer, who was a suburban soccer dad when he got involved with FIFA, was a member of the executive committee from 1996 to 2013 and the general secretary of CONCACAF, the governing body for soccer in North American, Central America, and the Caribbean.

He was famously corrupt, including not paying income taxes for a decade. He also had an apartment in Trump Tower just for his cats, according to the New York Daily News. (For more on Blazer, read this BuzzFeed profile from last fall.)

Blazer cooperated with the FBI, secretly recording FIFA officials at the behest of the Department of Justice. He was one of four former FIFA executives to plead guilty and become informants, building up evidence that led to last week's indictments and arrests of FIFA officials and FIFA president Sepp Blatter's resignation on Tuesday.