In today’s Age, there’s an article on how Australian taxpayer money is being used to bribe FIFA and other national soccer body officials to garner support for Australia’s World Cup Bid in 2022.
Item 1. It’s is actually illegal to spend Australian government money on bribes, gifts, holidays, and so on. This is contrary to the Bribery Act.
Item 2. Bribery is most likely illegal in all other FIFA playing countries, such that asking for or receving kick backs and gifts such as pearl necklaces and holidays is illegal.
The Federal Police should go in an investigate these claims, and prosecute them to the maximum extent that the law allows. We send folks who hold up a 7-11 for a measly $250 to jail for a couple of months to a few years depending on how stupid the crooks are. In this case, the “crooks” (in my opinion) are running double books and stealing Australian tax payer money to the tune of several millions of dollars per year. Bribery is theft pure and simple and is dealt with that way under Australian law.
Why is bribery and fraud so insidious? It is an opportunity cost. If the bribe did not need to be paid (and it NEVER does), then you can use that money for other things, such as health care, education, social programs, roads, and infrastructure. The more fraud you accept, the higher our taxes and the less you receive for it. In Australia’s case, $20m per year is nothing and the consultants and FFA are busy laughing it off. Wrong. For a third world country where the bribes are most likely to be accepted, this is actually death – actually no roads – actually no infrastructure. It’s evil and that’s why we and many countries have laws against it.
FIFA must immediately sack those who received or asked for gifts and change their processes to be bribe / fraud resistant and with huge sanctions on those who breach them – such as a 20 year disqualification from holding the World Cup for the countries involved, and immediate life bans from FIFA level competitions for those who seek to profit from their position.
FFA must immediately sack these “consultants”, and anyone in FFA who thinks running double books is a good idea. They must change their processes so that when they spend Australian tax payer funds, they adhere to all our laws, including the Bribery Act.
The AFP must look into these allegations and prosecute. This is like a thousand 7/11’s being held up, except Australian tax payer funds were in the till.
My guess? Nothing at all will happen. Welcome to your corrupt World Cup, a poisoned chalice for all those who covet it.