Former football officials Watson, Blake charged

Canover Watson and Bruce Blake

Two former senior officials of the Cayman Islands Football Association have been charged with a string of offences, including money laundering and false accounting, in connection with an ongoing corruption probe.

Bruce Blake, the former vice president of CIFA, and Canover Watson, the former treasurer of the association, were formally charged on Thursday, 8 Aug., by officers from the Anti Corruption Commission.

The announcement Thursday evening comes more than two years after the pair were first arrested. The ACC described the investigation as “complex and protracted”.

Blake was charged with one count of ‘secret commissions’ contrary to s.21(1)C of the Anti-Corruption Law 2008; two counts of acquiring or retention of criminal property (money laundering) contrary to s.134(1) and s.135 of the Proceeds of Crime Law 2008; and two counts of false accounting, contrary to s.255(1) of the Penal Code.

Watson has been charged with two counts of secret commissions, three counts of money laundering and two counts of false accounting.

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Both have been bailed to appear to appear in Summary Court on 20 Aug.

Watson and Blake were initially arrested in 2017 in relation to a probe involved US$1.2 million in funds that were “loaned” to the Cayman Islands Football Association in 2013.

The charges come a day before regional and global heads of football, Gianni Infantino, president of FIFA, and Victor Montagliani, president of CONCACAF, are due to visit Cayman and conduct a progress report on the Cayman Islands Football Association.

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