24 Aug 2021

Cook Islands Football President banned for six years

10:49 am on 24 August 2021

The President of the Cook Islands Football Association, Lee Harmon, has been banned from all football activities for six years and fined $US75,000.

Cook Islands Football Association President Lee Harmon (c).

Cook Islands Football Association President Lee Harmon (c). Photo: Oceania Football

The Oceania Football Confederation's Disciplinary and Ethics Committee found Mr Harmon had breached five articles of the OFC Code of Ethics, including conflicts of interest, offering and accepting gifts and other benefits and bribery and corruption.

The committee today imposed a range of sanctions on Mr Harmon, including banning him from taking part in any kind of football related activity at the national, regional, and international level for a six year period beginning on 16 August 2021.

He has been fined $US75,306 (NZ$110,000) and is also required to pay $NZ40,910.16 for the costs and expenses of the OFC investigation.

In 2019, Harmon was suspended by FIFA's Ethics Committee for three months and fined $US20,000 for breaching rules on the resale of World Cup tickets.

Since then the former OFC Vice-President and ex FIFA Council member has been excluded from the OFC Executive Committee.

Oceania Football said the ban on Mr Harmon will continue past its date of expiry until the fine and the costs are paid in full.

Lee Harmon has been President of the Cook Islands Football Association since 1997 but an OFC spokesperson said the ban means he automatically vacates the position, which is now vacant.

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