PARIS, June 18: Former UEFA president Michel Platini has been arrested in relation to a corruption probe into the awarding of the 2022 World Cup to Qatar, a judicial official said on Tuesday.
Confirming a report by online news publication Mediapart, the official said Platini was taken into custody on Tuesday as part of the investigation into the awarding of the tournament. The official spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorised to discuss an ongoing investigation.
Platini, a former France soccer great, was being detained at the Anti-Corruption Office of the Judicial Police outside Paris.
Also detained Tuesday for questioning was Sophie Dion, a former sports advisor of Nicolas Sarkozy when he was French president, the judicial official said. Claude Gueant, the former secretary general of the Elysee under Sarkozy, was quizzed by investigators as a witness and not detained.
French financial prosecutors have been investigating the bidding process for the 2018 and 2022 World Cups and previously questioned former FIFA president Sepp Blatter. France’s financial prosecutor services opened the investigation on grounds of private corruption, criminal association, influence peddling and benefiting from influence peddling relating to the 2018 and 2022 World Cups, which were awarded to Russia and Qatar, respectively. (AFP)