From 1989 to March 2012, Brazilian football main foundation was handled by only one person, and his name is Ricardo Teixeira. Under his tenure, the Brazilian NT won many titles, including 2 World Cups in 1994 and 2002, and also became one of the most profitable national squads in the footballing world. Much of it were earned through sponsorship deals and friendly taxes, but not of those were ever clear to Brazilian people. That’s why many accusation were thrown over Ricardo Teixeira and CBF businesses, but people never found proof to back them. Until now.
Switzerland superior court released yesterday documents that proves Ricardo Teixeira’s involvement in a bribing scheme in the now extinct marketing business ISL back at the 1990’s. The other Brazilian dirigent involved in the schemes is former Teixeira’s father-in-law and FIFA President of Honor João Havelange.
The document released by the Switzerland superior court reveals money transfers in Teixeira’s and Havelange’s bank accounts that mount up to US$ 22m. This also reverts the court decision back in 2010 of condemning both Teixeira and Havelange for receiving bribes in exchange of TV transmission rights, but not having their names revealed as they paid a part of the bribes to Swiss justice.
Much pressure was made by British TV channel BBC, which had showed a special program featuring journalist and old Ricardo Teixeira enemy Andrew Jennings regarding the ISL scandal and other major episodes, to reveal the name of people accused in the ISL process. But most of it was also related to FIFA’s decision of handling the 2018 World Cup to Russia instead of England, where rumours spread back in 2010 that Russian government paid almost €1bi to the main football organization to be the hosters; and Teixeira was also involved in it as a sort of intermediate.
FIFA tried to defend Ricardo Teixeira and João Havelange claiming that bribing is something “usual in people’s wages at South America and Africa”; that’s true if you’re only considering politicians. They also claimed that both of them can’t be punished based on the old FIFA’s laws, but FIFA’s president Joseph Blatter admitted that the bribes are “an ethical problem”.
Good thing is both of them might be prosecuted by Brazilian law if Switzerland requires judicial cooperation to punish them. Unfortunately, it’s hard to believe anything will come out; Switzerland superior court seemed to be pretty resistant at the 1st moment to release those files, only revealing them 2 years later. And considering how inefficient Brazilian judicial system is, along with Teixeira and Havelange connections with Brazilian politicians, everything could vanish in a week or two.
Another fun fact: While Brazilian media outlets like Record and ESPN Brazil are maximizing their coverage over this, Teixeira’s main ally TV Globo and its peers only had a minor report in their biggest news program and in their journals and sites. I couldn’t expect less of them.