MercoPress, en Español

Montevideo, September 22nd 2018 - 09:36 UTC

Uruguay's former football chief Bauza, only Conmebol member not indicted

Friday, December 4th 2015 - 07:49 UTC
Full article 5 comments
Uruguay's Sebastian Bauza so far is out of the FBI investigation, and feels 'very calm' about all the proceedings, including those in Montevideo  Uruguay's Sebastian Bauza so far is out of the FBI investigation, and feels 'very calm' about all the proceedings, including those in Montevideo
US Attorney General Loretta Lynch included Chriboga in the latest list of allegedly 16 indictments.   US Attorney General Loretta Lynch included Chriboga in the latest list of allegedly 16 indictments.
Bauza however had to quit AUF under strong pressure from then president Mujica regarding television rights in Uruguay to a local entrepreneur Bauza however had to quit AUF under strong pressure from then president Mujica regarding television rights in Uruguay to a local entrepreneur

Of the ten presidents from South America's football confederation, Conmebol, during the period under investigation by the FBI, only two had not been indicted until Thursday: Uruguay's Sebastian Bauza and Ecuador's Luis Chriboga. However US Attorney General Loretta Lynch included Chriboga in the latest list of allegedly 16 indictments.

 The original FBI investigation discovered that Uruguay's Eugenio Figueredo, arrested last May, Argentina's Julio Grondona and Brazil's Jose Maria Marin had each received 3 million dollars for facilitating television rights.

Another Conmebol chief (allegedly Nicolas Leoz from Paraguay) received half a million dollars while other seven presidents from the confederation were each paid 1.5m dollars. Which means there were only three 'clean' president, and Uruguay's Bauzá insisted all along he received no payment and never participated in the sharing schemes.

“I was invited several times to travel to the US where the contracts were going to be negotiated but I never wanted to go”, admits Bauza, who is a dentist by training but runs a confectionary and cakes family business in Montevideo.

”I never attended any of those negotiations, and never wanted to, because I thought it was not the correct way of managing the television rights. While I was president of AUF (Uruguay's football association) we handed the local television bid to a third party so it was sufficiently transparent for all out local clubs to have access. I avoided going to the US because I was not a member of Conmebol Executive Council“.

Bauzá admits there were dealings in Conmebol he never quite understood, ”for one Nicolas Leoz then head of the organization was the only signature in checks, in AUF, three people have to sign them; likewise when sanctioning teams involved in Libertadores or South American Cups, it was the same presidents that agreed among them. Now there's a tribunal and a disciplinary code to abide, whether you like it or not. Having access to contracts or balance sheets was also very hard“.

Further on Bauzá said he was feeling ”very calm“ about the whole issue.

”I was summoned to court (in Montevideo), I showed all the numbers, made my statements and the magistrate told me I was not indicted but rather a witness”.

Not surprisingly Bauza was finally forced to resign from his top job at AUF, under strong pressure none less than from then Uruguayan president Jose Mujica.

In effect, Bauza wanted the local television contracts to be auctioned but Mujica insisted they be directly awarded to a private agent, a very influential dealer in the sale of football players, and at one time a business associate of Eugenio Figueredo arrested in May, currently in prison trying to avoid extradition to United States.

Bauzá was clearly overwhelmed by influence and power and quit. Nevertheless they tried to involve him in Conmebol's racketing, in Uruguayan courts, but so far to no avail.

Top Comments

Disclaimer & comment rules
  • ChrisR

    Further evidence that the murdering commie bastard Mujica is a corrupt arsehole as well, despite claims by The Broad Fraud that he is untainted by corruption.

    1) The fiasco with Pluna where his big mate, the Owner and Chief Executive, Buquebus: Juan Carlos López Mena made him look a complete fool;

    2) The family who crashed the biggest processed fish company in Uruguay, 60% of national fish exports and employing 950+ people after U$D40M 'loan' from the Central Bank were supporters of this twat, flying him around SA with his harridan wife at no cost! We can all see what the real cost is, can't we?

    And now he wanted Bauzá to hand the rights to a single person who must have had some hold on 'No Money Pepe' instead of auctioning them. Bauzá seems to be a bit week kneed in reality as he gave in to Mujica.

    Dec 04th, 2015 - 11:37 am 0
  • golfcronie

    In hindsight ChrisR it was the right decision as Bauza would likely be indicted by now.

    Dec 04th, 2015 - 11:57 am 0
  • ChrisR

    @ 2 golfcronie

    I can see why you think that BUT (and there's always a but) Bauzá should have made the interference by Mujica public (having advised Mujica he was going to do it before hand).

    You NEVER give in to crooks, you 'deal' with the bastards. If you don't they end up fucking your life up, just like this.

    Dec 04th, 2015 - 12:30 pm 0
Read all comments

Commenting for this story is now closed.
If you have a Facebook account, become a fan and comment on our Facebook Page!