Sentencing delayed in Cayman Islander’s FIFA conviction
GEORGE TOWN - The anticipated sentencing of former CIFA and CONCACAF president, Jeffrey Webb, has been postponed by a New York judge. The disgraced Cayman Islands football official who rose to the dizzy heights of vice president of FIFA was convicted last year of racketeering, conspiracy, wire fraud and money laundering in relation to millions of dollars of bribes and kickbacks in relation to regional tournaments, tickets and marketing rights.
Due to be sentenced this week for his part in the massive FIFA corruption scandal, the case has been adjourned to November at Webb’s request, according to international media reports.
Webb is still a wanted man in the Cayman Islands in connection to a corruption scandal at the Health Services Authority, in which his close friend and business partner, Canover Watson, has already been convicted and is currently serving a seven-year jail sentence.
It is understood that Webb is also being investigated as part of a corruption enquiry into the Cayman Islands Football Association (CIFA) after it emerged during Watson’s trial that Webb may have been misappropriating funds from CIFA as well.
However, he cannot be extradited to Cayman to face charges there until he has been sentenced and, if given a jail sentence in the US, served that time. While the Cayman authorities have confirmed they still wish to extradite Webb, they may be saved the trouble if he is deported by the US authorities.
It is not clear yet why Webb has asked for an adjournment but in a letter to Judge Raymond Dearie, Webb’s New York lawyer, Edward O’Callaghan, asked that the date “be adjourned to November 18 at 10:00 am”. The letter did not give any reason but the judge nevertheless granted the postponement, according to reports based on court documents.
It is believed that Webb cut a deal with the US authorities when he pleaded guilty and appears to have given up a number of other FIFA officials involved in corruption, but it is not clear what difference that will make to his sentence. The 52-year-old Caymanian is thought to have handed over more than $6 million to US authorities in relation to the deal.
Webb remains under house arrest, with an electronic monitor, on a $10 million bond at his home near Atlanta, Georgia, where he lives with his American wife and their young son. Last month the court relaxed the conditions, allowing him to travel up to 50 miles from his Loganville home as he is the primary caregiver for the couple’s child.
He has also been seen continuing his extravagant lifestyle, with champagne fueled parties, which has irked FIFA and CONCACAF officials who suspect Webb has secreted away more of their cash than is being acknowledged.
Webb is just one of 40 football and sports marketing executives indicted in the massive FIFA corruption scandal, in which hundreds of millions of dollars went into the pockets of officials in the largest ever sports corruption scandal.
By Cayman News Service