Let’s cut to the chase here: Jack Warner straight up stole tens of millions of dollars in cash and property from soccer. He handed out cash and favors to build a power base in the Caribbean from which he could control CONCACAF and steal more money. Those are not allegations, they are facts. And now he’s pretending to play concerned watchdog to get back at the guy who blew the whistle on his gravy train.
In case you forgot, Jack Warner was forced to resign from his posts as the Executive VP of FIFA and President of CONCACAF after he was caught handing out envelopes full of cash on behalf of Mohammed Bin Hammam. A few of the recipients of these envelopes were uncomfortable about straight-up bribery, and reported it to CONCACAF General Secretary Chuck Blazer, who reported it to FIFA.
Under an intense international microscope, FIFA then began an actual investigation, bringing in former FBI director Louis Freeh to oversee. Instead of getting pinned with fun crimes like currency smuggling, conspiracy, and embezzlement, Warner washed his hands and walked away.
But just because he’s not allowed to even kick a FIFA-sanctioned soccer ball lest they sew his ass up for more white-collar crimes than a fleet of Enrons, doesn’t mean Uncle Jack is about to let go of his grudge against Blazer.
No, Warner is alleging that the Santa Claus-lookalike misused funds, paying for his own Trump Tower apartment along with the CONCACAF office in the same building, as well as a pair of apartments in Miami.
He’s also attempting to deny Blazer’s claim to a 10% commission on TV rights sold by the former General Secretary, which would amount to about $7 million. He claims to have a copy of a letter he sent to Blazer saying that the contract, which he claims was only for four years, 1994-1998, would not be renewed.
Now, I have no idea if Warner’s allegations are true. But even if they are, this isn’t so much a case of the pot calling the kettle black as it is the pot burning a cross on the kettle’s lawn and saying the kettle should be involuntarily repatriated. Jack Warner has motive to lie, and a long track record of saying whatever he wants to get what he wants.
Let’s run through some of Jack’s greatest hits, shall we?
- Had FIFA build a multi-million dollar center of excellence in Trinidad and Tobago, which was put under his personal ownership. He then used it as collateral for cash loans, none of which he’s paid back.
- Straight-up stole the money from Trinidad and Tobago’s World Cup run which was supposed to be paid to the players.
- Was caught illegally selling World Cup tickets through his family’s travel agency. FIFA being FIFA, Warner was ordered to pay a fine. He paid part of it, and then everyone kind of just let it go because he was still instrumental to Sepp Blatter’s power base.
So while Jack is free to spew whatever kind of verbal sludge he wishes, the news outlets do their readers and the truth when they run stories like THIS lathered liberally with quotes from Warner and his Caribbean replacement Jeff Webb, while ignoring his past crimes and glossing over the whole “open bribery” thing at the end. The BBC has been taken in by one of the biggest financial criminals on the world and been played like a drum. Jack wanted to turn the focus to Blazer, and that’s what they’ve done for him in exchange for a few juicy quotes.
And we can’t really ignore the stratospheric levels of irony involved when a reputable news source allows JACK WARNER to cast aspersions of financial misconduct. That’s like letting Hitler write your op/ed column about intolerance.