NEW: Law enforcement source says Jeffrey Webb, a former FIFA vice president, arrived Wednesday
U.S. officials requested the extradition of seven high-ranking FIFA officials arrested in Switzerland in May
A Swiss probe into corruption allegations surrounding the next two World Cups has grown
A former FIFA official being held in Switzerland as part of a corruption scandal has been extradited to the United States, officials said Thursday.
Jeffrey Webb, a former FIFA vice president and onetime head of CONCACAF, the soccer governing body for North America and the Caribbean, arrived in New York on Wednesday, a law enforcement source told CNN.
No court appearance has been scheduled, the source said.
Earlier, the Swiss Federal Office of Justice said a FIFA official had been extradited, but it didn’t name the official. The official was handed over to U.S. police escorts in Zurich.
Webb, 50, was banned by FIFA, which has headquarters in Switzerland, from “football-related activities,” after he was indicted in May in the United States. He had been on the governing group’s executive committee since May 2012.
CONCACAF dismissed Webb, who is from the Cayman Islands, from his post as president of the organization after the FIFA scandal broke.
Earlier this month, U.S. officials requested the extradition of seven high-ranking FIFA officials arrested in Switzerland in May. They are suspected of taking bribes worth over $100 million in connection with soccer tournaments.
A Swiss probe into corruption allegations surrounding the next two World Cups has grown to include 81 acts of suspicious financial activity now under investigation, Andre Marty, a spokesman for the office of the attorney general, told CNN via email in early July.
He confirmed that all reports were in relation to the ongoing investigation into the allocation of the 2018 – scheduled to be held in Russia – and 2022 – in Qatar – editions of the World Cup, FIFA’s flagship tournament.
Calls this month by CNN to the Qatar 2022 Supreme Committee for Delivery and Legacy, the organizing committee for the 2022 tournament, went unanswered, and at the time of writing the Football Union of Russia had not responded to CNN requests for a statement.
Both Russia and Qatar, however, have publicly denied any wrongdoing with regards to the bidding processes of the two tournaments.
FIFA has previously declined to comment further to CNN but it says it has been cooperating with the investigation – including allowing a search of its premises.
The investigation was originally focused on 53 cases, Michael Lauber, the Swiss attorney general, said in June.
Lauber also said, in announcing the initial cases, that he was unconcerned if the investigation produced “collateral damage” in terms of the two countries’ right to host their respective tournaments.
Should instances of corruption be proven, the bidding process for the next two World Cups could be reopened, senior FIFA official Domenico Scala has previously said.
The Swiss investigation is proceeding alongside a probe launched by the U.S. Justice Department. The scale of the two operations was brought to light when several high-profile officials were arrested in May as part of an early-morning raid at a luxury hotel in Zurich ahead of FIFA’s world congress.
FIFA president Sepp Blatter, who was re-elected to a new five-year term just days after his executive ranks were decimated by the arrests, later announced he would be stepping down once a successor could be found, though he has not been arrested or indicted.
“Culture of corruption”
Richard Weber, head of the IRS criminal investigation division, told reporters following the arrests that the defendants “fostered a culture of corruption and greed.”
“This really is the World Cup of fraud, and today we are issuing FIFA a red card,” he said.
Why is the U.S. bringing down the hammer on FIFA?
FIFA officials are accused of taking bribes totaling more than $150 million and in return providing “lucrative media and marketing rights” to soccer tournaments as kickbacks over the past 24 years.
The news of the widened investigation comes only days after former FIFA executive-turned-whistleblower Chuck Blazer was banned from all football-related activities for life by FIFA’s ethics committee.
He had previously pleaded guilty to a string of charges brought by U.S. prosecutors, including racketeering, wire fraud, money laundering and income tax evasion in 2013.
CNN’s Evan Perez and Shimon Prokupecz contributed to this report.