WORLD


Swiss prosecutors step up 2006 World Cup probe in FIFA case

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Baku, September 1, AZERTAC

Swiss federal prosecutors are conducting an "ongoing operation" in an investigation of the 2006 World Cup organising committee as part of a wider probe of corruption linked to FIFA, according to The Associated Press.

The office of Swiss attorney general Michael Lauber told The Associated Press that details of the operation should be confirmed later on Thursday.

German news magazine Der Speigel reported that Swiss authorities are pursuing a case against former Bayern Munich and Germany star Franz Beckenbauer for suspected money laundering and breach of trust.

German organisers of the 2006 World Cup -- led by Beckenbauer, a World Cup-winning player and coach -- have been under investigation by Swiss prosecutors and the FIFA ethics committee for several months over alleged bribery and irregular payments of several million dollars linked to FIFA.

Beckenbauer headed his country's bid to win the hosting rights in 2000 in a tight vote ahead of a South Africa bid backed by Nelson Mandela. He then chaired the organising committee.

Beckenbauer, 70, has denied wrongdoing.

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