— Published 27 October 2023

Infantino relieved of investigation

End of story. FIFA announced on Thursday October 26 that the long-running legal battle over alleged secret meetings between its President, Gianni Infantino, and the former head of the Swiss Federal Prosecutor’s Office, Michael Lauber (pictured above), was now over. The case has been closed. “FIFA takes note, with extreme satisfaction, of the decision of the two extraordinary federal prosecutors, Hans Maurer and Ulrich Weder, to dismiss and definitively close the proceedings brought against Gianni Infantino in connection with the so-called ‘Lauber’ affair,” emphasized the soccer body in a highly triumphalist statement. The outcome of this investigation is obviously unsurprising. The only surprising element is the time it has taken to reach such an obvious conclusion.” In the same statement, Gianni Infantino explains that he sees the decision as “a total and clear victory for me, for the new FIFA and for justice!“. As a reminder, the Italian-Swiss executive had been charged since July 2020 with “incitement to abuse authority“, “violation of official secrecy” and “obstruction of criminal proceedings“. Michel Lauber, for his part, was suspected of abuse of authority, breach of official secrecy and favoritism. He was forced to resign in 2020. The courts were investigating a series of secret meetings between the two men between July 2015 and June 2017, at a time when an inquiry was being launched into suspicions of corruption in the awarding of the 2022 World Cup to Qatar.