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'I have no fear' - Burrell not worried about - prosecution in FIFA probe

Published:Thursday | December 17, 2015 | 12:00 AMLeighton Levy
Burrell

Jamaica Football Federation (JFF) president, Captain Horace Burrell, said his hands are clean and does not fear being prosecuted in connection with the ongoing investigations into corruption at football's world governing body FIFA and has vowed to oversee changes that will restore CONCACAF's reputation.

Since May this year, two presidents - Jeffrey Webb and Alfredo Hawit - of CONCACAF, the confederation representing football bodies from the Caribbean and North and Central America, have been arrested as the United States Justice Department in conjunction with Swiss authorities investigate malfeasance amounting to hundreds of millions of dollars.

Webb, who was arrested in May, and Hawit, jailed in early December, were among an estimated 30 football officials who were arrested between May and December this year. Webb has pleaded not guilty to corruption charges in US Federal Court.

Arising from the arrests, Burrell, a close friend and business partner of Webb, was among several officials appointed to an executive committee at CONCACAF that will oversee the running of the confederation until elections are held in May 2016.

Asked if there were fears among the committee members about further arrests, Burrell said he was not fearful of being implicated of anything sinister.

"I can only speak for myself; I have absolutely no fear or concerns and I am sure my other colleagues would feel the same way, but you just can't swear for anyone in this case, so we just have to hope," he said.

Meanwhile, he said CONCACAF executives have been aggressively pursuing solutions to the ongoing crisis that will ensure that in future the organisation will not have to endure the embarrassment of the ongoing situation.

He claims proposed reforms being pursued within CONCACAF will exceed those being put in place at FIFA.

"It is now said CONCACAF are the trendsetters for the reform process because we are going deeper in some of the areas than FIFA is," he said. "So currently, we are on track to repair the image, to rebuild the image and to chart a course that will see us not getting back into this situation.

"Whoever goes there eventually will not have an opportunity to slip back into what has caused us to be in this position."