FIFA panel bans 3 former soccer officials for life

FIFA’s ethics watchdogs have banned three former soccer officials from Guam, Nicaragua and Venezuela for life as part of efforts to address widespread corruption in the sport, the world football governing body said on Tuesday.

The latest officials to be hit by FIFA bans are Richard Lai, the former Guam Football Association president and a former member of the FIFA audit and compliance committee; Julio Rocha, the former Nicaraguan Football Association president and a former FIFA development officer; and Rafael Esquivel, former Venezuelan Football Association president.

All three men had pleaded guilty in the United States to separate federal charges ranging from wire fraud to racketeering and money laundering.

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