By Collister M. Fahie
Sentencing of defendants reveals behind the scenes maneuvering of the Feds, because Costas Takkas was put “in almost complete isolation for 29 months after his arrest” in the FIFAGATE scandal.
Jeffrey Webb, on the other hand, “parties lavishly with his wife on her birthday” and has been out on bail after his arrest in the FIFAGATE scandal and subsequent guilty plea. Costas Takkas was described as “a “sad, semi-retired Peter Pan of a man”, and more of a “glorified gofer, errand boy [and] hanger-on.” But was he really?
Takkas, “the lowest man on the FIFA prosecution totem pole” according to his attorneys, was arrested in Zurich on May 27, 2015, the day Webb and several others were arrested for their roles in the FIFA corruption scandal. Also that day, US prosecutors unveiled a related racketeering case against top-level international soccer, charging executives at FIFA, the sport’s global organizer, with taking $151 million in bribes to back tournament marketing contract applicants. But was Takkas really the lowest man on the FIFA prosecution totem pole?
“In return for all of the trust he put into Mr Webb and the tremendous amount of time he will never get back, what Costas has to show for his efforts, above all, is a felony conviction and more than two years of suffering,” attorneys for Takkas said.
Following his arrest, Takkas was held in almost complete isolation for 29 months, which had severe effects on his physical and mental health, his attorneys contend. Almost two years after his arrest, Takkas pled guilty to the single charge against him. The otherwise dull life Costas Takkas led, coupled with his misguided faith in Jeffrey Webb as the saviour of Caribbean soccer, warrant a below-guidelines sentence, Takkas’ attorneys told the court in a memorandum recently.
Takkas, 60, will be sentenced October 31 after pleading guilty in May to money laundering conspiracy related to wire transfers he made for bribe money received by Webb, then president of the Confederation of North Central America and Caribbean Association Football.
Perhaps Webb is not so powerful after all and despite his arrogance will get more jail time and fines than Takkas. Maybe Takkas is still trying to pull the wool over the eyes of the Feds to get no time in jail or fines. Remember Jack Warner was king but Chuck Blazer was kingmaker and look at what Blazer did to the corruptors in FIFA, CONCACAF, and CONMEBOL before dying? (RIP)
In January 2018, the former king of CONCACAF soccer, Jeffrey Webb, will be sentenced after numerous changes in his sentencing date. His sentencing will come AFTER the sentencing of Takkas. The Feds have done a masterful job of divide and conquer and perhaps the final stanza is yet to be written. Perhaps there is yet another twist to come.
If Takkas pleads guilty to money laundering conspiracy in connection with bribe money received by Webb, then is it possible he also knew and handled money sent from FIFA, Qatar, Russia, Sepp Blatter, Michel Platini, Jerome Valcke, Markus Kattner, etc. If he was trusted with committing money laundering conspiracy why would he not be involved in all the other crimes?
The Feds played a great hand of chess but Takkas it seems held his own in the game. Many have fallen but there is still time for the Feds to find and prosecute more FIFAGATE crooks.
It seems we should all be very, very wary of the so called kingmakers and this goes especially to the kings. Checkmate.