Trinidad and Tobago Police Commissioner Dwayne Gibbs said the police will commence a criminal investigation into alleged bribery allegations at last month’s meeting between Caribbean Football Union (CFU) officials and former FIFA presidential candidate Mohamed bin Hammam only when he receives information from FIFA Ethics Committee.
He has written to FIFA seeking information. Gibbs was responding to a five-day ultimatum given by Opposition Leader Dr. Keith Rowley to change his position on starting a criminal probe into alleged bribery that occurred at the meeting.
The controversial meeting, which was held at the Hyatt Regency Hotel, Port of Spain May 10-11 led to a full investigation by FIFA’s Ethics Committee and to the temporary suspension of FIFA vice-president Trinidad and Tobago government minister Austin “Jack” Warner and bin Hammam until its completion.
Since Warner’s suspension, Dr. Rowley has made several calls for his removal as a cabinet minister and for the police to start an investigation into the alleged bribery.
At a press conference recently Gibbs said that a criminal investigation into the meeting and Warner could only be undertaken by police through official reports and tangible information.
Gibbs said there has been no official report made by any member of the society, or by any official of FIFA with regards to alleged criminal conduct based on reports carried by the media.
In the statement Gibbs responded to calls made by the opposition leader for the police to investigate the allegation that approximately US$1 million was brought into the country, contrary to the Foreign Exchange Act and the Customs Act to pay bribes to the CFU officials in exchange for votes in the FIFA presidential election on June 1.