NEW YORK, (Pakistan Point News - APP - 27th Jan, 2017 ) : A US judge on Friday delayed again the planned sentencing of disgraced former Honduran president Rafael Callejas in the sweeping corruption scandal rocking world soccer, this time until June 16. The 73-year-old was scheduled this Friday to become the first defendant sentenced in the FIFA scandal in New York after pleading guilty to conspiracy to commit racketeering and wire fraud. But Judge Pamela Chen accepted a request from the defense, consented to by government prosecutors, for an adjournment.
She re-scheduled the sentencing for June 16, a court document said. No reason was publicly stated. The Federal court in Brooklyn has for months systematically delayed sentencings of FIFA defendants who have pleaded guilty. The next scheduled sentencing is for Alfredo Hawit, a former FIFA vice president, on March 24. Callejas has been free on a $4 million bail in the United States since leaving Honduras by private jet in December 2015 to face justice.
He served as president of Honduras from 1990 to 1994. He was head of the country's football federation from 2002 to 2015, and is also a former member of FIFA's Television and Marketing Committee. US prosecutors in New York have indicted 40 football and sports marketing executives over allegedly receiving tens of millions of bribes and kickbacks in the largest corruption scandal in the history of soccer. A trial is scheduled to begin November 6 for five defendants currently in the United States who have pleaded not guilty. The corruption investigation precipitated the downfall of longtime FIFA president Sepp Blatter and his former heir apparent, Michel Platini, who have both been banned from the sport for six years for ethics violations.