Bin Hammam confirms 6.7m euro payment from Germany

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Berlin – Disgraced former senior FIFA official Mohamed Bin
Hammam has confirmed receiving 6.7 million euros (7.3 million
dollars) in a payment which has been linked to the awarding of the
2006 World Cup to Germany, a German broadcaster reports.

However, the former vice-president of football’s governing body has
denied involvement in any bribery in connection with the payment,
according to a report to be broadcast Sunday in ZDF’s
“Sportreportage” programme.

In the exclusive ZDF interview, Bin Hammam said: “The 6.7 million
euros have gone into my account, yes. But I would like to know why
Germany should have bribed me for something they have already
received.

“The sum was received after the (2000) World Cup award on my
account.”

Asked if he knew why he received a payment from Germany, he replied:
“I do not know. No, of course I know, but excuse me – it’s only you
who cares, no one else.”

The Qatar businessmen also said corruption allegations linked to the
controversial award of Qatar as 2022 World Cup host did not concern
him.

“They do not affect me all. These are just allegations and remain
allegations,” he said.

Bin Hammam, who was banned from football for life in 2011 in
connection with vote-buying allegations around the FIFA presidential
elections, is seen as a key figure in the 2006 World Cup affair.

In 2002, the sum was transferred from an account controlled by World
Cup organizing committee chief Franz Beckenbauer and his now deceased
manager Robert Schwan via Switzerland to a company controlled by Bin
Hammam.

Shortly afterwards Beckenbauer received a similar sum from former
Adidas boss Robert Louis-Dreyfus.

A 6.7-million-euro payment was then sent three years later by the
German Football Federation DFB to FIFA, declared as a contribution
for a cultural event which never took place. Investigators believe
this was a hidden repayment via FIFA to Louis-Dreyfus.

DFB president Reinhard Grindel told Sport Bild last month he was
aiming for a personal meeting with Bin Hammam in Qatar to discuss the
payment. However, he had received no response to a request for a
meeting made to Bin Hammam’s lawyer’s office.

Beckenbauer has rejected any bribes were paid in connection with the
2006 World Cup and argued that Germany’s World Cup organizers wanted
to secure the payment of an organizational cost subsidy from FIFA – a
claim which has been denied by former FIFA president Joseph Blatter.

Swiss prosecutors opened criminal proceedings on November 6, 2015
against Beckenbauer and former senior German football federation
officials Wolfgang Niersbach, Theo Zwanziger and Horst R Schmidt.

German prosecuting authorities in November 2015 separately opened an
investigation on “suspicion of tax evasion in a particularly severe
case” into senior DFB officials in connection with the payment.



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