SOCHI, Russia – A big mystery in the recent era of corruption linked to FIFA is being revealed this week.
The report into suspected corruption in the 2018-2022 World Cup bidding contests — involving 11 nations and won by Russia and Qatar — has been the mystery ever since American investigator Michael Garcia delivered it more than 2-1/2 years ago.
A leaked copy of the 430-page document kept confidential by FIFA and Switzerland’s attorney general has finally surfaced.
Germany’s biggest-selling daily Bild began publishing extracts in its Tuesday edition. It promises more revelations all week as FIFA leaders gather in Russia for the Confederations Cup final, a dress rehearsal for a World Cup next year that was won controversially in December 2010.
Garcia’s report was once expected to be explosive and became a holy grail for FIFA critics who thought the votes could be re-run.
Many believe bid leaders in Russia and Qatar must have engaged in wrongdoing to earn the votes of a FIFA executive committee lineup in 2010 that has since been widely discredited.
Most of those who took part in the 2010 vote have since been banned for unethical conduct, indicted on corruption charges by the U.S. Department of Justice, or remain under scrutiny by Swiss federal prosecutors who have 25 ongoing investigations involving more than 170…