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Criminal probe into CFA president expected

The CFA's Giorgos Koumas

The sports ethics committee on Tuesday handed their findings on the conduct of Cyprus Football Association (CFA) president Giorgos Koumas, accused of breach of duty, to the attorney-general.

Speaking to reporters just before delivering the dossier, vice-chairman of the ethics committee Efthymios Efthymiou said it was now up to the attorney-general to take the matter forward or not.

“Our investigators determined there is an issue of incompatibility of office regarding the president of the CFA,” he said.

Efthymiou categorically dismissed allegations made by Koumas’ attorneys – namely that the investigation disregarded the presumption of innocence and amounted to a pre-decided outcome.

“How can anyone’s rights have been violated, especially when that someone did not even come forward to testify?” he countered.

Asked what comes next, Efthymiou said he expects the attorney-general to immediately order a criminal probe into the affair.

A week ago the ethics committee had recommended that criminal proceedings be brought against Koumas.

Koumas, 60, has had a career fraught with controversy. Elected president of the CFA in March 2018, he got re-elected in 2023.

In 2018, the website To Thema Online accused Koumas of secretly owning several companies registered in the Seychelles and the British Virgin Islands, which the semi-governmental organisation CyTA allegedly bought television rights from. This was said to have taken place while Koumas held the position of deputy head at the CFA.

In June 2023, Koumas denied allegations that his group concealed Uefa red notices regarding match fixing.

And in late September of this year, the sports ethics committee found that Koumas has a conflict of interest as he owns several companies which trade football broadcasting rights. Under Cypriot law, an individual cannot hold an official position in sports when they have vested business interests in the sport they are serving.

 

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