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Two more FIFA vice-presidents arrested in Zurich

Zurich: The unprecedented corruption scandal engulfing FIFA widened yesterday with the arrests of two more top officials in another dramatic dawn raid at a luxury hotel, as football's world body announced reforms aimed at repairing its tarnished reputation.

Juan Napout and Alfredo Hawit
Juan Napout and Alfredo Hawit

Swiss authorities in Zurich again acted on a request from the US justice department, a repeat of the sweeping arrests in May that sparked the scandal which has shaken world football's governing body to its core.

The Swiss justice ministry (FOJ) said the targeted officials were South American Football Confederation president Juan Angel Napout, and Alfredo Hawit, head of the Confederation of North, Central American and Caribbean. Hawit, a Honduran national, and Napout of Paraguay are both opposing extradition to the United States, the FOJ said.

Both are suspected of taking millions of dollars in bribes in return for selling marketing rights for regional tournaments and World Cup qualifying matches, the FOJ said.

Transparency measures
Separately, FIFA's remaining leadership approved a series of measures aimed at improving transparency and curbing the authority of the body's much-maligned executive committee, which has emerged as an epicentre of graft. The measures include a 12-year term limit for FIFA's president and other senior leaders, public disclosure of compensation for top officials and a pledge to include more women in senior positions.

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