This essay BASL Corruption has a total of 8064 words and 37 pages.
Fifa corruption crisis: Key questions answered
Fifa, football's world governing body, has been engulfed by claims of widespread corruption since summer 2015, when the US Department of Justice indicted several top executives.
It has now claimed the careers of two of the most powerful men in football, Fifa President Sepp Blatter and Uefa President Michel Platini, after they were banned for eight years from all football-related activities by Fifa's ethics committee. A Swiss criminal investigation into the pair is also continuing.
Fifa's president Sepp Blatter has always denied any wrongdoing - but in September, he too was made the subject of a Swiss criminal investigation, launched alongside the US inquiry.
The scandal erupted in May, with a raid on a luxury hotel in Zurich and the arrest of seven Fifa executives - conducted at the behest of the US authorities.
In May the US indicted 14 current and former Fifa officials and associates on charges of "rampant, systemic, and deep-rooted" corruption following a major inquiry by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI).
And in December, 16 more officials were charged following the arrest of two Fifa vice-presidents in at the same hotel in Zurich. Former Brazil football federation chief Ricardo Teixeira was among those accused of being "involved in criminal schemes involving well over $200m (£132m) in bribes and kickbacks".
Why does this matter?
Fifa is the body responsible for running world football. It has recently been dogged by accusations of corruption, particularly after awarding the 2022 World Cup to the tiny but rich and influential Gulf state of Qatar. In December 2014, Fifa chose not to release its own investigation into corruption, instead releasing an executive summary which it said exonerated the bidding process. The report's independent author, American lawyer Michael Garcia, resigned in protest.
The World Cup is the most-watched sporting event in the world, larger even than the Olympics. It generates billions of dollars in revenue from corporate sponsors, broadcasting rights and merchandising. These arrests and investigations cast doubt over the transparency and honesty for the process of allocating World Cup tournaments, electing its president, and the administration of funds, including those earmarked for improving football facilities in some of Fifa's poorer members.
Is Sepp Blatter still Fifa president?
This is unclear. He was already suspended, so he was president in name only. Speaking after the verdict was delivered, he maintained that he could only be stripped of the presidency by a vote including all the member nations of Fifa. There is no precedent for these events so the point at which he no longer has the title of president is unclear. However, the one thing we do know is that he is not running the organisation.
Is this the end for Sepp Blatter and Michel Platini?
Yes, unless they win the appeals they intend to lodge against the charges. Mr Blatter had already said he would step down as Fifa president in February but the eight-year ban will make this immediate.
Michel Platini had hoped to run as a candidate to replace Mr Blatter but the ban on him will halt these ambitions. He will also have to step down as the head of the European football association (Uefa). The bans would also likely mean that the two men would fail Fifa ethics standards if they ever tried to return.
What were they accused of?
They were found guilty of breaches surrounding a £1.3m ($2m) "disloyal payment" made to Platini in 2011. The Fifa ethics committee said that pair had demonstrated an "abusive execution" of their positions.
They have both maintained that the payment was for work by Mr Platini as the president's advisor in 2002. Mr Blatter has maintained that Fifa did not have enough money to pay Mr Platini at the time, so they agreed to delay payment.
Fifa is already holding a presidential election in February to replace Mr Blatter so this will continue as planned. Uefa will also have to hold elections to decide on a new head, but they may well wait until after Fifa has picked a new president.
Both Mr Blatter and Mr Platini were already suspended and so were not running their organisations. Fifa will continue to be run by Fifa vice-president Issa Hayatou until after elections in the new year. Uefa will also continue to be run by