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FIFA bans former Botswana official in match fixing probe

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(Reuters) – World soccer body FIFA has handed a life ban to former Botswana Football Association general secretary Mooketsi Kgotlele for accepting bribes in relation to the manipulation of international matches.

FIFA said in a statement on Monday that the adjudicatory chamber of the Independent Ethics Committee had also fined the former official 50,000 Swiss francs (£40,876.71).

“The formal ethics proceedings against Mr Kgotlele… stem from an extensive investigation into various attempts to manipulate international matches for betting purposes by Mr Wilson Raj Perumal, a known match-fixer,” said FIFA

The proceedings were initiated in September 2018, the statement added.

The ban on Kgotlele covers all football-related activities (administrative, sports or any other) at national and international level and came into force on Monday.

The long-running investigation into convicted Singapore-based match fixer Perumal’s activities has already produced life bans for players and former officials.

Togolese Football Association official Kokou Hougnimon Fagla, who was also a referee, was banned from soccer-related activities last March for accepting bribes to manipulate an international friendly.

Seven current and former players were banned for life in April.

FIFA named them at the time as Karlon Murray and Keyeno Thomas from Trinidad, Ibrahim Kargbo (Sierra Leone), Hellings Mwakasungula (Malawi), Seidath Tchomogo (Benin), Leonel Duarte (Cuba) and Mohammad Salim Israfeel Kohistani (Afghanistan).

Kenyan player George Owino Audi was given a 10-year ban and Zimbabwean players’ agent Kudzanai Shaba was banned for life.

FIFA did not give any details on which matches they had attempted to influence.

Perumal was given a two-year jail sentence by a Finnish court in 2011 for bribing players and referees to fix matches.

(Reporting by Alan Baldwin, Editing by William Maclean and Pritha Sarkar)

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