AFC suspends bin Hammam because of bribery
KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia (AP) -The Asian Football Confederation accused its disgraced president Mohammed bin Hammam of bribery after an internal audit revealed fresh allegations of financial wrongdoings by the Qatari football official.
The AFC said Monday it enforced a provisional suspension of 30 days for bin Hammam, who is already fighting a lifetime ban from football, imposed by FIFA.
The charges heap further shame on the Qatar, who was ousted from FIFA for trying to buy votes while challenging Sepp Blatter for presidency of football's governing body last year.
The latest sanctions against bin Hammam come after a yearlong audit that has revealed "infringements'' regarding the "execution of certain contracts'' and tampering with AFC bank accounts, the Asian football body said in a statement Monday.
The statement did not elaborate. It only said the case has been referred to the AFC's disciplinary committee.
Bin Hammam was elected AFC president in 2002. He has been fighting to restore his reputation since a bribery scandal hit the highest management of world football in May 2011, a week before the FIFA presidential election.
The Qatari withdrew his bid just hours before FIFA provisional suspension, allowing Blatter to be re-elected unopposed.
FIFA used evidence from whistleblowers that bin Hammam funded $40,000 worth of bribes, offering cash to officials from 24 Caribbean football nations during his campaign visit to Trinidad.
Bin Hammam was formally banned for life from all football duty last summer.
FIFA vice president Jack Warner was also implicated in the scandal. Warner was ousted from world football after almost three decades as a power broker in the Caribbean.
Bin Hammam appalled the FIFA ban in April at the Court of Arbitration for Sport in Lausanne, Switzerland.
A verdict in the case is expected within days.