FIFA`s Michael J Garcia, a tough lawyer who pushed back
Former US federal prosecutor Michael J Garcia`s decision to fire back at FIFA on Thursday comes after a long legal career that has seen him tackle tough anti-terror and financial cases.
Los Angeles: Former US federal prosecutor Michael J Garcia`s decision to fire back at FIFA on Thursday comes after a long legal career that has seen him tackle tough anti-terror and financial cases.
Named by Sepp Blatter in 2012 to investigate corruption allegations surrounding the selection of Russia and Qatar to host future World Cup competitions, Garcia on Thursday condemned FIFA`s "incomplete and erroneous" version of his final report.
In September, Garcia demanded the complete publication of his lengthy findings, written after two years of painstaking work by a team of five investigators combing the sometimes-murky world of international soccer.
From 1992 to 2001, Garcia was a federal prosecutor in New York.
He worked on several high-profile cases, including the 1993 World Trade Center bombing and the 1998 attacks on US embassies in East Africa, according to a biography on his law firm`s website.
"My work on the World Trade Center bombing would define my career in government service," he said during his 2003 nomination as assistant secretary for the Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency (ICE).
Garcia, a Republican, led the 2008 prosecution of the Democrats` Eliot Spitzer, who at the time was the New York governor but resigned in the aftermath of a prostitution scandal.
He was considered as a possible new head for the Federal Bureau of Investigation in 2011 but his political ties to the administration of George W Bush ensured he didn`t get the job.
In 2008, after 16 years of public service, Garcia joined the Kirkland and Ellis law firm in New York.
Though he confessed to knowing nothing about soccer, a troubled FIFA appointed him to its ethics committee to lead the probe.
But he issued a statement on Thursday saying: "Today`s decision by the chairman of the adjudicatory chamber contains numerous materially incomplete and erroneous representations of the facts and conclusions detailed in the investigatory chamber`s report. I intend to appeal this decision to the FIFA Appeal Committee."
Garcia has also worked as vice president of the Americas for Interpol, the international police organization, and has supervised federal agents in investigating violations of export laws for goods to embargoed nations such as Iran and Cuba, his law firm said.
His wife Liana is an FBI agent, according to Garcia`s ICE nomination hearing in 2003.