‘Lex FIFA’ is good now?

Observers have generally welcomed the new ‘Lex FIFA’ – a tighter private corruption law to clamp down on situations of bribery at Swiss-based sports federations like FIFA, also as businesses. But you’ll find concerns over future implementation on the law and accompanying measures like whistleblower protection.

Roland Büchel, a Swiss People’s Celebration parliamentarian and one particular of FIFA’s fiercest critics, is delighted with all the new legal modifications authorized by parliament this week to create private corruption a criminal offence.

“This law will undoubtedly be robust enough to sanction corruption in sports federations like FIFA in the future. I am confident that there is a powerful preventive aspect to it,” stated Büchel, who lodged a motion to fight corruption in FIFA 16 coins as well as other sports organisations back in 2010.

Following years of dragging its feet and under stress from outside organisations just like the Council of Europe’s Group of States against Corruption (GRECO), Switzerland is introducing legal measures to fight corruption which also have an effect on sports federations.

On Thursday, the Swiss Senate followed the House of Representatives by voting for a proposal to beef up the nation’s corruption laws to make it an automatic criminal offence for anybody to offer or accept bribes.
Under the new adjustments, private corruption may be punished by a maximum three-year jail sentence. Sanctions will apply to firms, private associations and sports federations.

The law would make it feasible for federal prosecutors to launch corruption probes against the 60 international sporting federations, which includes FIFA and the International Olympic Committee, which are primarily based in Switzerland.

Till now, private corruption investigations in Switzerland could only be launched if an organization, person or group filed a complaint about alleged malpractice inside its own ranks.