Former Thailand FA President Receives Suspended Jail Term Of One Year

Former FIFA executive committee member Worawi Makudi
Former FIFA executive committee member Worawi Makudi

Former FIFA executive committee member Worawi Makudi was found guilty on Wednesday of forgery in his 2013 re-election to lead the Football Associated of Thailand.

A Bangkok criminal court sentenced Worawi to a suspended jail term of one year and four months.

Worawi, whose 18 years on FIFA’s ruling committee ended in May, told local media he will appeal.

The court gave the same suspended sentence to former FAT secretary general Ong-art Korsinka.

The two men were found guilty of falsifying documents to amend the FAT statutes in the election Worawi won, and which extended his presidency since 2007.

As first-time offenders, the court reduced their sentences from two years in jail and a fine of 6,000 baht ($173), to 16 months and 4,000 baht.

Worawi’s election win by a 42-24 vote was previously challenged at the Court of Arbitration for Sport by the losing candidate, Virach Chanpanich.

The sports court ruled last July that “irregularities alleged by Mr. Chanpanich either did not exist … or were not supported by evidence.”

Worawi was a controversial figure in his FIFA position, which ended after he failed to retain his seat representing the Asian Football Confederation.

The Associated Press and other media organizations reported that he was under investigation by FIFA’s ethics committee for his conduct during the 2018 and 2022 World Cup bidding contests. The FIFA ethics panel has not confirmed the case, citing secrecy rules.

Worawi was a long-time ally of Mohamed bin Hammam, the former FIFA presidential candidate from Qatar who was banned from football for life over alleged financial mismanagement of AFC accounts while president.

FIFA’s ethics committee investigated Worawi in 2011 over allegations that more than $800,000 of development money was spent on projects built on land he owned near Bangkok.

That case was closed after FIFA accepted documents showing Worawi donated the land to the Thai football body.

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