A Swiss court acquitted former FIFA President Sepp Blatter and France footballing legend and former head of UEFA Michel Platini of corruption charges Friday, ending a seven-year investigation.
Both were accused of fraud over an alleged 2011 payment of $2 million from Blatter to Platini for consulting fees.
The Swiss judge Friday said the payment was credibly used for consulting work and was likely not fraudulent.
Blatter and Platini had characterized the payment as a “gentlemen’s agreement.”
“I have always said my conscience is clear,” Blatter told reporters outside the court.
“Naturally nobody’s perfect, but in the case of my job, my work, 44 years working at FIFA, for me it is so important that this case has been settled at the highest Swiss level,” the 86-year-old added.
Platini also expressed relief at the decision.
“I want to express my happiness for all my loved ones that justice has finally been done after seven years of lies and manipulation,” Platini said.
“The truth has come to light,” he added. “I kept saying it: my fight is a fight against injustice.”
The two men were banned from soccer several years ago.
Both could have faced prison time or fines.
Some information in this report comes from The Associated Press and Reuters.