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Head of Spanish football arrested on corruption charges

Angel Maria Villar, who is also vice president of Fifa and Uefa, has been detained along with his son as part of a police probe.

Villar (centre) alongside former French president  Francois Hollande (left) and former Iceland president Olafur Ragnar at Euro 2016.
Villar (centre) alongside former French president Francois Hollande (left) and former Iceland president Olafur Ragnar at Euro 2016.
Image: DPA/PA Images

THE PRESIDENT OF the Spanish Football Federation, Angel Maria Villar, has been detained by police as part of a corruption probe, a judicial source said.

Villar, a former Spanish international footballer, was being held on suspicion of abusing his position to embezzle funds from the federation, among other charges, the source said.

Villar’s son Gorka and another federation official were also detained in the probe which notably focuses on match fixing at international level.

The 67-year is also vice president of football governing bodies Fifa and Uefa.

Spain’s political and financial crimes court said it is directing the probe into allegations of “collusion, fraud, embezzlement and presumed forgery.”

Police who carried out raids on the federation headquarters and other locations related to the probe said that Villar is suspected of organising international football matches as part of a scheme to embezzle profits for the benefit of his son.

Inigo Mendez de Vigo, a spokesman for the Spanish government, told public television in response to the Villar arrest that “no one is untouchable and everyone must obey the law.”

© – AFP 2017

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