Arrest of Bolivian football executives continues

La Paz, July 24 (IANS) A spate of arrests of officials at the Bolivian Football Federation (FBF) continued with two members of its executive committee being detained for suspected corruption and fraud.

Jorge Justiniano and Pedro Zambrano were arrested in Sucre after arriving at the offices of the Attorney General.

The case of the two will be heard by Roberto Valdivieso, the judge who sent the president of the FBF to prison on Tuesday.

The President of the FBF, Carlos Chavez, and its Executive Secretary Alberto Lozado, were the first two to be arrested. Chavez was sent to the Palmasola prison in Santa Cruz while Lozado was remanded under house arrest.

Chavez was first elected President of the FBF in 2006 before being re-elected in 2010 and 2014. He is facing charges of organised crime activities, money laundering, use of undue influence, abuse of power, tax evasion, and fraud.

Justiniano and Zambrano resurfaced several days after the media reports had stated they were on the run.

This had led Bolivia’s Attorney General, Ramiro Guerrero, to order the police to deploy resources to locate their whereabouts.

In response, Zambrano contacted the press to express his surprise at Guerrero’s remarks and to state that he was afraid at the events unfolding before him.

While no links have officially been made to the ongoing FIFA corruption investigation, over 20 Bolivian football officials have been interrogated since June 1.

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