NEW YORK– A Florida media company pleaded guilty Tuesday to bribing soccer officials and agreed — with its Spanish parent company — to pay more than $24 million in fines, the latest scalps in a sweeping US prosecution of FIFA corruption.
Imagina US pleaded guilty over bribes to senior officials of the Caribbean Football Union (CFU) and four Central American soccer federations to secure media and marketing rights to World Cup qualifier matches.
Imagina US agreed to forfeit $5.28 million in criminal proceeds before a federal court in Brooklyn, New York, US prosecutors announced.
Tuesday’s plea was heard by Judge Pamela Chen, who presided over the trial that convicted two ex-heads of Latin American football federations, after the United States unveiled the largest graft scandal in the history of world soccer.
Imagina US was sentenced to pay $3 million in restitution to the CFU, $1.7 million to the Honduran soccer federation, $790,000 to Guatemala’s, $600,000 to Costa Rica’s and $565,000 to El Salvador’s.