Singaporean named in Fifa’s Garcia Report
The Fifa Ethics Committee's Investigatory Chamber had opened investigations into the dealings of Singaporean Sim Hong Chye - also known as Joe Sim - for his part in dealings between the Football Association of Thailand (FAT) and various Qatari officials in the lead-up to the vote to determine the hosts for the 2018 and 2022 World Cup.
Qatar won the right to host the 2022 tourney with the 2018 edition going to Russia.
This was revealed in Fifa's Garcia Report, a 434-page report produced by American lawyer Michael Garcia that was completed in 2014.
The report was commissioned by Fifa to look deeper into allegations of corruption around the voting process that determines which countries would host its World Cup.
It was released in its entirety by Fifa on Tuesday, after the document was believed to have been leaked to media outlets.
Two months after Garcia completed his report in September 2014, Fifa cleared Russia and Qatar of any wrongdoing in its 42-page summary.
Garcia quit soon after, calling the Fifa summary "materially incomplete and erroneous".
Sim, called the "Casino King" by the South China Morning Post in a 1996 report, was a key figure in the Garcia Report.
In the lead-up to the World Cup vote, Sim allegedly led a "team" to meet Qatari officials to discuss the potential sale of liquefied natural gas (LNG) and - simultaneously - a football sponsorship. Sim had earlier claimed that he is the "Chief Adviser" to the FAT.
Brian Teo, believed to be a representative of Singapore company Alco Automation, was also involved in the above discussions.
"But while Mr. Sim represented "(t)here was no connection between the two points of discussion", he did not explain why two unrelated business proposals - one involving sponsorship and the other gas importation, and each presented by a different participant - were negotiated simultaneously on two separate occasions," said the report.
The report revealed that the chief executive of Qatar's World Cup bid team, Hassan Al-Thawadi, "was unaware of Mr. Sim's meetings" with Qatar officials.
"It was plainly inappropriate for Mr. Sim, an adviser to the Thai FA, to simultaneously negotiate football sponsorships and LNG sales with Qatari energy leaders months before the December 2010 World Cup vote, given Qatar's bid to host and (FAT's) Mr. Worawi Makudi's status as a voting member of Fifa's Executive Committee," said the Garcia Report, which declared that it found "no evidence of improper activity" by Qatar's bid team or any football officials.
But investigations into Sim and his Thai contacts were opened.
"For the reasons stated above, the Investigatory Chamber has opened formal investigatory proceedings against Messrs. Makudi and Sim with respect to the allegations concerning the negotiations over the sale of LNG," read the report.
Makudi is currently serving a five-year ban from all football activities, for forgery and falsification. This, after the Fifa Ethics Committee found him guilty of making "alterations to the FAT Statutes without the approval of the FAT Congress".