FIFA’s ethics committee has reportedly recovered 48 of 65 watches handed out to football officials last summer in what was considered to be a breach of the global football governing body's rules.
Watches worth $26,600 were left in gift bags for the 28 FIFA ExCo members by the Brazilian football federation (CBF) during the recent World Cup.
It is known that the Brazilian football association gave out 65 gift bags in total, with the other watches given to a representative from each of the 32 member nations competing at the World Cup, and an official from each of the 10 members of the South American football confederation. (CONMEBOL)
The gifts were against official FIFA policy, as their ethics committee prohibits any gifts of more than “symbolic or trivial value”. In that light the watches were ordered to be returned, or else the recipients would face disciplinary proceedings.
According to FIFA's ethics committee, “Following said investigations and after contacting all potential recipients, 48 watches were returned to the investigatory chamber of the Ethics Committee.”
These watches have been reportedly donated to the non-profit global NGO streetfootballworld who FIFA says will invest the proceeds gained from the sale of the watches into "initiatives across Brazil that use football to drive social change”.
The statement further added; “The investigatory chamber of the ethics committee considers the matter to be closed. ”