Published: Tue, July 18, 2017
Sport | By Gary Shelton

RFEF President Angel Maria Villar Arrested As Part Of Anti-Corruption Investigation

RFEF President Angel Maria Villar Arrested As Part Of Anti-Corruption Investigation

Angel Maria Villar, president of the Spanish FA, and his son, Gorka, have been arrested over allegations of corruption, judicial sources have revealed.

"A brief police statement said merely the arrests were as a result of "'irregularites in the management of the Federation".

Villar, his son - named by Spanish media as Gorka - and several other Spanish soccer federation members were detained on allegations of collusion, fraud and embezzlement, the police said in a statement.

Inigo Mendez de Vigo, a spokesman for the Spanish government, told public television in response to the Villar arrest that "no-one is untouchable and everyone must obey the law".

The RFEF has yet to make any comment. The raids were carried out by the Guardia Civil's anti-corruption unit as part of an operation called SOULE.

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Spanish newspaper El Pais reports that the investigation is being overseen by Audiencia Nacional judge Santiago Pedraz and is looking into alleged use of RFEF money to secure support from Spain's regional federations for Villar's re-election recently for an eighth consecutive term as federation president.

Interestingly, just as Villar announced his ultimately doomed bid for the UEFA presidency, so his son, no stranger to controversy himself, left CONMEBOL, where he was director general, by "common accord".

Ex-Athletic Bilbao player Villar founded Spain's players union (AFE) in 1978 before becoming RFEF chief in 1988.

He was elected to the Uefa executive committee 25 years ago, and Fifa's ruling committee 19 years ago.

Increasingly seen as a polarising figure with leadership ambitions, he decided against trying to succeed Michel Platini as Uefa president a year ago.

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