Cayman Islands police looking into football association, government halts funding

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CIFA was until recently headed by Jeffrey Webb.

MIAMI, USA (Reuters) – The Cayman Islands Football Association (CIFA), until recently headed by arrested FIFA official Jeffrey Webb, is facing an investigation from police on the Caribbean island in the latest probe linked to corruption in the sport.The Cayman Islands’ Anti-Corruption Commission said yesterday that an issue relating to CIFA was reported to them.
“The Anti-Corruption Commission can confirm that a matter involving the Cayman Islands Football Association (CIFA) has been brought to the Commission’s attention. This matter is being reviewed and no further information will be released at this time,” a spokesperson for the body told Reuters via email.
Local media reported that CIFA’s auditors had reported “suspicious transactions” to the authority.
The auditors Rankin Berkower did not respond to requests for comment. CIFA did not immediately respond to requests for comment.
CIFA, which under Webb became a key player in CONCACAF, the football confederation for North and Central America and the Caribbean, has also had its government funding withdrawn.
Sports Minister Osbourne Bodden moved to cut CIFA’s funding last week after the organisation refused to accept the nomination of two new members to its executive committee.
Renard Moxam and Sharon Roulstone were told their nomination papers were not in order and CIFA on Saturday re-elected Bruce Blake as its vice-president.
Webb, who is facing trial in the United States on a series of corruption related charges, is currently suspended so Blake will continue as acting CIFA president.
“In the light of all that has happened in the recent past with FIFA, CONCACAF and by extension CIFA, one would have thought we could have gotten past this to allow some possible changes,” Bodden said in a statement.
“As a government we have therefore decided that regrettably we cannot financially support CIFA any further under the current circumstances,” Bodden added.
Webb, once tipped as a future FIFA president, has pleaded not guilty to U.S. charges of racketeering conspiracy, wire fraud and money-laundering. He has been released on a $10 million bond co-signed by family members.
The former CONCACAF president is also facing charges in his homeland related to a healthcare fraud case which involved former CIFA treasurer Canover Watson, previously a member of FIFA’s Audit and Compliance Committee.

By Simon Evans