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Asia Today ISSN 1861-4604 Friday, April 28, 2017

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Panama Leaks casualty: FIFA ethics committee member resigns

Juan Pedro Damiani resigned over allegations

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NYON, Switzerland - The Panama Papers expose, one of the largest data leaks in history has led to another casualty. This time, it was a member of the FIFA ethics committee, Juan Pedro Damiani who resigned over allegations in the Panama Papers.> Big News Network

Juan Pedro Damiani has reportedly resigned over alleged links between him and his compatriot Eugenio Figueredo, who was the former FIFA vice-president.

Reports revealed that Damiani, a Uruguayan lawyer allegedly did work for at least seven companies linked to Figueredo, who was arrested in 2015 on corruption charges by the United States Department of Justice.

The Panama Papers showed that Damiani’s firm helped Figueredo set up a shell company. The documents went on to reveal that Damiani’s firm acted as an intermediary for a Nevada-based company that has links with two other people who have been charged with corruption by the U.S. The people have been identified in news reports as businessmen Hugo Jinkis and his son Mariano of Argentina.

Damiani is said to have resigned after the investigatory chamber launched a probe into the allegations and has denied any wrongdoing in the case.

AFP quoted panel spokesman Marc Tenbuecken as saying, “We can confirm that Mr Damiani resigned from his position as member of the adjudicatory chamber of the independent Ethics Committee of FIFA.”

Soon after the Panama Papers became public, the investigatory chamber of FIFA’s ethics committee released a statement claiming that they were made aware of a business relationship between Damiani and Figueredo on 19 March.

The Panama Papers leak exposed tax havens used by the elite, through the release of over 2.6 terabytes of data with more than 11.5 million documents. Documents contain records of Panama-based law firm Mossack Fonseca’s dealings implicating several global leaders, celebrities, sports icons, business tycoons and their families. The documents reportedly show how Mossack Fonseca has helped clients launder money, dodge sanctions and evade tax.

Initially obtained by German newspaper Suddeutsche Zeitung, the Panama Papers were investigated for over a year by the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists (ICIJ) and involved more than 100 publications from nearly 80 countries.

The Panama Papers website by ICIJ has described the leaks as an “unprecedented investigation that reveals the offshore links of some of the globe’s most prominent figures.”

Meanwhile, the website also said that the records do not show illegal conduct by Damiani or his law firm.

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