Football: Fifa bans ex-VP Reynald Temarii for eight years

People celebrate in front of a screen that reads "Congratulations Qatar" after Fifa announced that Qatar will be host of the 2022 World Cup in Souq Waqif in Doha in this Dec 2, 2010 file photo. Fifa on Wednesday banned former vice-president Reynald T
People celebrate in front of a screen that reads "Congratulations Qatar" after Fifa announced that Qatar will be host of the 2022 World Cup in Souq Waqif in Doha in this Dec 2, 2010 file photo. Fifa on Wednesday banned former vice-president Reynald Temarii for eight years for accepting almost US$350,000 (S$460,000) from disgraced Qatari official Mohamed bin Hammam to pay legal fees in a corruption case. -- PHOTO: REUTERS

LAUSANNE (AFP) - Fifa on Wednesday banned former vice-president Reynald Temarii for eight years for accepting almost US$350,000 (S$460,000) from disgraced Qatari official Mohamed bin Hammam to pay legal fees in a corruption case.

Hammam paid Temarii €305,640 ($460,000) in January 2011, weeks after Fifa voted to award the 2022 World Cup to Qatar, said a Fifa statement.

Temarii, was at the time head of the Oceania Football Confederation (OFC) as well as the Tahiti Football Association chief.

Hammam helped Temarii's appeal against a one year suspension imposed in November 2010 by Fifa which prevented him from voting in the contests for the 2018 and 2022 World Cups one month later.

The OFC had agreed to back Australia's bid for 2022 but Temarii's appeal meant it cast no vote.

Fifa said Hammam, then a member of the Fifa executive committee and the Asian Football Confederation president, covered the costs of Temarii's legal expenses.

"Mr Temarii received the money in January 2011 following a meeting with Mr Bin Hammam in November 2010 in Kuala Lumpur," Fifa said in a statement after the ruling by the adjudicatory chamber of the independent Fifa Ethics Committee, chaired by Hans-Joachim Eckert.

Temarii was banned "from taking part in any kind of football-related activity at national and international level for a period of eight years", Fifa said.

In November 2010, Fifa's ethics committee banned Temarii from Fifa's decision making executive committee for one year and fined him for ethics violations, following a Sunday Times undercover report on vote-buying during the race to host the World Cups.

Russia and Qatar won the right to stage the 2018 and 2022 World Cups in a secret ballot by the remaining members of Fifa's executive committee in December.

The process and outcome met with severe criticism from several quarters. Qatar has denied any wrongdoing in the World Cup vote.

Hammam was banned for life from football activities in December 2012 over "conflicts of interest".