Spain’s sport court has formally opened disciplinary procedure against head of the country’s football association (RFEF) Angel Maria following his arrest last week in cases pertaining to corruption in the sport. He was arrested and jailed last week alongside his son and members of the federation in raids conducted by the police.
It has also paved way for Spain’s sports authority, the Higher Council of Sport, to rule whether it will temporarily suspend Villar when they convene on Tuesday at 7 PM local time (1700 GMT).
The court’s decision was on the cards since Thursday when the Higher Council of Sport asked the court to act against Villar following the arrest. The Spanish league (LFP), which runs the top two divisions of club football and the women’s club league, had announced on Monday that it would take part in the case against Villar as an injured party.
La Liga president Javier Tebas has been a longtime critic of Villar and the federation, which looks after the functioning of the national teams, the calendar of the club competitions, and the domestic competition Copa del Rey among other areas of Spanish football.
Villar, his son Gorka, federation vice president Juan Padron, and Ramon Hernandez, the secretary of the regional football federation of Tenerife, were arrested last week when the police raided the national federation’s headquarters and other properties. They were arrested on charges of improper management, misappropriation of funds, corruption and falsifying documents.
National Court judge Santiago Pedraz ordered last week that the Villars and Padron remain in jail without bail. Meanwhile Hernandez’s bail was set at 100,000 Euros ($116,000). Angel Maria Villar is also FIFA’s senior vice president and also a vice president of UEFA. He’s been the president of the Spanish federation since 1988.
Inigo Mendez de Vigo, the minister of education, culture and sport and the government spokesman, has stated that the government is ready to take charge of the operations of the federation so that running of football in the country is not harmed by the scandal. The calendar scheduling for the first two divisions of Spanish football was delayed by a day following the arrests.