FIFA's Ethics Committee is meeting today with Caribbean Football Union ExCo member and longtime Jack Warner toadie Colin Klass to give him an opportunity to respond to the accusation that he took a bag of Mohammad Bin Hammam's money home from Port of Spain and has been lying about it ever since.
Klass, who was the only one of the 16 CFU administrators that FIFA chose to provisionally suspend pending a hearing - the other 15 officials will have their cases heard next week - told the AP on Monday that he was asking for a delay because "I need more time to get everything in perspective", whatever the hell that means.
He then added "My position remains the same and I will be outspoken about it. They are going about things in the wrong way. I fear no evil because I am not worried."
Which certainly clears things up nicely.
It's been something of a mystery why it is that they singled out Klass with both the suspension and an expedited hearing; some people speculate that it's simply because he's a member of the CFU's Executive Committee and has to be held to a higher standard than your garden variety federation
money grubbers officials.
Plus, he admits that he personally organized a "Denial Campaign" wherein he contacted individual CFU officials and instructed them
to lie to tell the Ethics Committee that no money was given out and, in case they were wondering, Jack Warner is innocent of doing what they deny happened.
Or something. It's pretty confused.
Well, perhaps so..
On the other hand, maybe they singled Klass out because of the statement given by Bahamian VP Fred Lunn - he of the cell phone picture of the piled-up money - describing Klass' behavior outside the ballroom where the loot was being doled out:
"Outside the boardroom, Mr Lunn encountered Lionel Haven (a former Bahamas FA board member) and Colin Klass.
"According to Mr Lunn, Mr Klass stated: 'Why is this door locked? Are there people getting bribed around here?'
"The male (CFU official) then allowed Mr Klass to enter the boardroom, which he exited after a few minutes. Mr Lunn noticed that Mr Klass had a smile on his face and was slightly giggling." To be fair, Klass denies it all. He didn't go into the room. He didn't receive any money. He didn't giggle like a 9 year old girl with Bieber fever.
Lies. All lies.
Meanwhile, in an obvious attempt to counter the wave of "FIFA, the Americans and white people in general are attempting to bring down the CFU" propaganda campaign, and particularly to get the extremely influential Captain Horace Burrell of Jamaica (Acting CFU President, almost certain to be confirmed whenever they get around to it and a strong candidate for President of CONCACAF)on their side, FIFA suddenly can't do enough for the CFU in general and Burrell in particular.
Endless waves of FIFA technical people (bringing money) are descending on Jamaica like a plague of locusts.
Of course one of the officials is FIFA's Caribbean Development Officer, Daryll Warner, but since they're at pains to prove that they're not on a vendetta against his father I'm guessing his job is as safe as can be.*
(Currently, Jack is busy anyway; the government has dispatched him to deal personally with the all-important "Piles of Junk" problem:
How the mighty have fallen)
So as we wait for the word from Zurich which will almost certainly be that Klass has trousered his last "gift", ponder this:
Captain Burrell has every intention of turning Jamaica into a football power. He's scouring the globe for eligible players and fleecing FIFA for lots and lots of money which they're only too happy to provide.
He's dead serious about this and he knows he's holding the cards. FIFA needs a friend in the Caribbean right now to counter the fact that they're coming down hard on a bunch of guys who were only doing what everybody the world over has always done.
And the Captain is only too happy to be that pal, but he's not going to come cheap.
* Missed my guess; I'm told that as of Dec 31, that office is closing and Daryll will be out of a job.
UPDATE: Klass has been banned for 26 months and fined 5000 Swiss francs, which is about US$5500, which means he nets US$ 34,500 on the deal.