The corruption of Sheikh Ahmed Al-Sabah of Kuwait in the Doha World Cup
We write further to the following articles about Sheikh Ahmed Al-Sabah, a senior renegade member of the Royal Family of Kuwait, describing his participation as the principal Kingpin in the corruption in the Doha World Cup; and related issues.
Sheikh Ahmed is the most culpable of all the people named in the massive international corruption scandal that led to Doha being appointed in 2010 as a wholly inappropriate host city for the 2022 FIFA World Cup. Here is a list of the most recent relevant articles:
Now read the following BBC News article dated 17 January 2023.
Italian Pier Antonio Panzeri held in EU-Qatargate bribery probe agrees to tell all
An alleged leader of a criminal network involved in an EU corruption scandal has agreed to reveal which countries were involved.
Prosecutors said Pier Antonio Panzeri agreed the plea deal under an informant law used only once before in Belgium.
The former member of the European Parliament is one of four suspects being held in Belgium.
They are suspected of accepting bribes from Qatar and Morocco in return for influencing the Parliament in Brussels.
Qatar has strenuously denied that it tried to gain influence through gifts and money while Morocco has also strongly rejected allegations that it sought influence on issues such as fishing rights and the disputed status of Western Sahara.
The four suspects wThe other suspects include a serving Greek MEP, Eva Kaili, who has been stripped of her role as a vice-president of the Parliament, her partner Francesco Giorgi, and lobbyist Niccolò Figà-Talamanca.
After Mr Panzeri, 67, left the Parliament he became the head of a lobby group called Fight Impunity.Panzeri, 67, left the Parliament he became the head of a lobby group called FightImpunity. Mr Figà-Talamanca worked from the same building in Brussels for a separate NGO.
According to a statement from Belgium's federal prosecutor, the former MEP agreed to the plea bargain under a law modelled on an Italian provision for repentant mafia members or "pentiti" to turn state witness.
A spokesman said he faced a year in jail, rather than a "much heavier prison sentence", as well as a fine and confiscation of €1m in assets.
In return he would be required to give details of how the network operated, what the financial arrangements were with the countries concerned, and "the involvement of known and unknown persons within the investigation, including the identity of the persons he admits to having bribed".
The plea deal was released a day after an Italian court agreed to extradite the ex-MEP's daughter, Silvia Panzeri, 38, on suspicion of involvement in the scandal.
The same court in the northern city of Brescia ruled last month that Mr Panzeri's wife, Maria Colleoni, could also be extradited, but Italy's top appeal court will give a final ruling on their case. The two women are currently are house arrest and deny allegations of corruption and money laundering.
Greek MEP Eva Kaili, who also denies involvement in the case, is suspected along with the others of taking bribes from Qatar in return for influencing EU policy-making.
Her partner Francesco Giorgi was reported to have confessed last month to his role in the affair.
However, Mr Panzeri's reference to unknown people within the investigation suggests more revelations are due to emerge.
Belgian prosecutors have already sought to lift the immunity of two more centre-left MEPs. Belgian Marc Tarabella and Andrea Cozzolino from Italy.
Lawyers for both MEPs have denied that they played any part in the scandal but the request is being reviewed by Parliament's legal affairs committee.
Here are some other BBC articles about the same thing:
We rest our case. The noose is slipping ever more tightly around the neck of Sheikh Ahmed.