The consultant Jean-Charles Brisard and his ex-wife, the lawyer Géraldine Lesieur, were indicted on Tuesday and Wednesday in the judicial investigation opened in Paris on the attribution of the 2022 football World Cup to Qatar, he said. we learned Thursday from a judicial source.
Both, until then under the more favorable status of assisted witness, were indicted for fraud and concealment of the crime of corruption of a person not exercising a public function, this source said.
Since 2019, Parisian investigating judges have sought to know whether the vote of Michel Platini, at the time head of UEFA, in favor of awarding the emirate the organization of the World Cup in 2022 , was obtained in exchange for consideration.
The magistrates are also interested in the role of the former president of the Oceanian Football Confederation (OFC) Reynald Temarii, then defended by Me Lesieur and advised by Jean-Charles Brisard, also president of the Terrorism Analysis Center (CAT) .
On the day of the vote, December 2, 2010, Reynald Temarii could no longer sit on the executive committee because he had been suspended for one year by the International Football Federation (Fifa) on November 17, 2010 for violation of the code of ethics after articles in the Sunday Times.
The OFC therefore had to appoint a replacement who would have given its vote to Australia in the first round of voting and then, in the event of failure, to the United States, Qatar's main rivals.
But Mr. Temarii appealed his suspension on the night of November 30 to December 1. Thus, according to the FIFA statutes, he deprived the OFC of a representative during the vote.
On December 2, 2010, Qatar won against the United States, although they were favorites.
In October 2022, Mr. Temarii said he was the victim of fraud, explaining that he had received, before deciding to appeal, a confidential note from Jean-Charles Brisard informing him that the Swiss federal prosecutor's office was considering prosecuting him for corruption and that the absence of an appeal could be interpreted as an admission of guilt.
According to Mr. Temarii, indicted for passive private corruption on May 22, 2023, these were false elements intended to push him to appeal.
Investigations also revealed that Mr Temarii's defense costs had been financed by the influential Qatari Mohamed Bin Hammam. This sum (300,000 euros) was paid to Mr. Brisard's company, JCB Consulting, which he then had to redistribute to the lawyers.
“The investigating magistrates artificially arrange disparate events to write a scenario worthy of an excellent film but without any convincing element,” reacted to AFP Me Julia Minkowski, lawyer for Mr. Brisard.
“Mr. Temarii would first be the victim of a fraud, then guilty of corruption, all while refusing to waive his right of appeal without knowing the motivation for the decision which had condemned him? This intellectual construction resists neither the facts nor legal analysis,” she continued.
For Mr Pascal Garbarini, the indictment of his client Mr Lesieur “is based only on hypotheses which are however swept away by the facts and their chronology”.
“Me Lesieur's defense strategy has always been the same from his intervention for Mr Temarii”, namely advising him to appeal the sanction of the Fifa ethics committee, he insisted.
“It is not acceptable that a lawyer's defense strategy is now used to try to characterize artificial offenses,” concluded the council.