FIFA has banned Yves Jean-Bart, a football federation chief, for life from all football-related activities for sexually abusing female players, including minors.
The president of Haiti’s national association (FHF), Jean-Bart was handed the sanction by the adjudicatory chamber of FIFA’s independent ethics committee.
Jean-Bart, a former standing committee member of football’s world governing body, was found guilty of abusing his position after being involved in “systematic” sexual abuse and harassment, FIFA said in a statement.
Other FHF officials are alleged to be involved as principals, accomplices or instigators, with their cases pending, FIFA said.
As well as the life ban, FIFA said Jean-Bart has been fined one million Swiss francs (over £827,000).
A FIFA statement read: “The adjudicatory chamber of the independent Ethics Committee has found Yves Jean-Bart, the President of the Haitian Football Association (FHF) and former FIFA standing committee member, guilty of having abused his position and sexually harassed and abused various female players, including minors, in violation of the FIFA Code of Ethics.
“The aforementioned ethics proceedings are part of an extensive investigation concerning Mr Jean Bart, as well as other officials within the FHF, who were identified as having allegedly been involved (as principals, accomplices or instigators) in acts of systematic sexual abuse against female football players between 2014 and 2020. The proceedings are still pending with respect to other FHF officials.
“In its decision, the adjudicatory chamber found that Mr Jean-Bart had breached art. 23 (Protection of physical and mental integrity) and art. 25 (Abuse of position) of the FIFA Code of Ethics and sanctioned him with a life ban from all football-related activities (administrative, sports or any other) at both national and international level. In addition, a fine in the amount of CHF 1,000,000 has been imposed on Mr Jean-Bart.”
The decision was taken on Wednesday, and Jean-Bart will receive the full written decision within 60 days.
On Friday, The Guardian reported Jean-Bart had been cleared of any wrongdoing by the Haitian justice system and that he is planning to appeal against his ban to the court of arbitration for sport.
A spokesman for Jean-Bart is reported to have told The Guardian: “FIFA’s decision is a travesty of justice and purely political move to avoid further controversy and bad press following a series of high-profile scandals.
“Unlike the Haitian judicial system that properly investigated and cleared Dr Jean-Bart of any wrongdoing, FIFA failed to review actual evidence which is why Dr. Jean-Bart expects to be fully exonerated and reinstated after appealing to the court of arbitration for sport.”
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