A former Guatemalan soccer official tearfully told a Brooklyn federal judge Friday he accepted kickbacks as part of a wide-ranging FIFA corruption case.
“I knew it was wrong for me to accept those payments and not make it known,” Héctor Trujillo, the ex-general secretary of the Guatemalan soccer federation, told Judge Pamela Chen.
Trujillo, 63, will forfeit $175,000 as part of his deal pleading guilty to wire fraud and wire fraud conspiracy.
Prosecutors said Trujillo, a former judge in the Guatemalan Constitutional Court, accepted payments from a Miami sports marketing company for the media and marketing rights to Guatemala’s home qualifiers for the 2018 and 2022 World Cups.
Soccer official admits to laundering $1.5M in FIFA bribery case
Authorities got their hands on Trujillo in December 2015, when the cruise ship he was travelling on arrived at a Florida port.
Prosecutors are driving up the win column in the soccer scandal.
Last week, Costas Takkas, the former general secretary of the Cayman Islands Football Association, pleaded guilty to money laundering. Takkas copped to receiving and passing along more than $1 million to a former CONCACAF President and FIFA vice president, who’s also pleaded guilty in the case.
Trujillo’s plea brings the conviction count up to 23 guilty pleas in the soccer scandal. Three other soccer bigs are still pressing ahead with a trial that’s scheduled to start in November.
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