Ex-soccer chief alleges to be tortured for confession

Updated: 2012-04-24 22:35


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DANDONG - Ex-chief of China's soccer ruling body Xie Yalong denied parts of the bribes charges against him in court on Tuesday and alleged to have been tortured for confession.

The former director of the Football Administrative Center has been charged with taking over 1.7 million yuan (about $273,000) in bribes, according to the court documents as the second round of trials on soccer corruption opened here on Tuesday morning.

Ex-soccer chief alleges to be tortured for confession

Former CFA chief Xie Yalong (R) and former Chinese national team manager Wei Shaohui in this Jan 5, 2008 file photo. [Photo/Xinhua]

Xie had allegedly accepted bribes from a dozen of companies, clubs and individuals on 12 occasions between 1998 and 2008, including 178,400 yuan from a leading executive in China for US sportswear giant Nike.

According to his attorney Jin Xiaoguang, however, the 56-year-old Xie told the court on Tuesday that he had confessed to some of the alleged charges since someone had "forced him" during earlier interrogations.

His defence team thus moved to have all his confessions abandoned since they were obtained illegally.

Dating back to 1998 when Xie was director of the Mass Sports Department of the State General Administration of Sports, he received 200,000 yuan from a Qingdao sports equipment manufacturer, said Tuesday's indictment.

Xie has also been indicted on taking bribes totaling 1,527,800 yuan in his capacity as the director of the Football Administrative Center and Chinese Football Association (CFA) executive deputy chairman between 2005 and 2008.

"He received 178,400 yuan from Li Tong, Nike China's marketing director, for helping Nike win a title sponsorship deal with the Chinese Super League," said the indictment.

Xie also allegedly accepted 50,000 yuan from Zhu Guanghu in 2006 in return for keeping him as the national team head coach and received 319,700 yuan from the Guangzhou Pharmaceuticals club for match-fixing.

Xie has been the highest ranked former soccer official to face justice, and his successor Nan Yong set to go on trial on Wednesday in another northeastern city of Tieling in Liaoning province.

During the two-year-long national-wide crackdown on soccer corruption, dozens of high-ranking soccer officials, referees and players have been brought down.