August 31 – Former FIFA vice-president Jeffrey Webb, the most high-profile official snared in the FIFAGate corruption scandal, has waived his legal right to so-called “unconflicted counsel”, agreeing to continue with his current law firm, according to local media reports in his native Cayman Islands.
A hearing was apparently held in Webb’s absence on Tuesday in US federal court in Brooklyn. According to federal court records, Webb, through his attorneys, agreed to continue with his current lawyers Clifford Chance.
Webb, formerly head of CONCACAF and touted as a future FIFA president, pleaded guilty to seven charges of corruption in November 2015. Since then one of the firms representing him has taken on another defendant in the ongoing probe, Jorge Luis Arzuaga.
An Argentine national, Arzuaga worked for Swiss bankers Julius Baer and is reported to have acted alone when he allegedly helped funnel kickbacks and bribery payments to an official in the Americas.
One problem in having the same counsel representing two different defendants in a related case is the concern that lawyers who receive privileged or confidential information on behalf of one defendant could not disclose or use that information to assist the other.
Webb, whose trial has been postponed five times and is now scheduled for 24 January 2018, is currently on bail in the US with travel restrictions limited to the area around his home. He is accused of soliciting bribes from sports marketing companies in exchange for broadcast and commercial rights contracts to major tournaments and could face 20 years in jail.
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