Jack Warner: 5 Fast Facts You Need to Know

Jack Warner, Jack Warner FIFA, Jack Warner arrested, jack warner corruption

Former FIFA Vice President Jack Warner. (Getty)

Jack Warner is one of 10 high-ranking current and former FIFA officials who were arrested by Swiss authorities on a variety of corruption charges early Wednesday morning, the New York Times reports.

Warner, 72, served as Vice President of FIFA and President of CONCACAF until his suspension and, eventual, resignation from both positions in 2011.

The charges against the officials include wire fraud racketeering and money laundering, according to the Times. The arrests occurred, unannounced, at the Baur au Lac Hotel in Zurich with Swiss authorities acting at the request of the United States Department of Justice., Warner has already claimed innocence in these latest round of charges.

Here’s what you need to know:

1. Warner Was a CONCACAF & FIFA Executive for More Than 20 Years

Jack Warner, FIFA

Jack Warner has served in several high-ranking capacities on the international soccer spectrum. (Getty)

Warner was named the CONCACAF Vice-President in 1983 and, at the same time, joined the FIFA Executive Committee. He quickly rose through the ranks and was elected as the CONCACAF President in 1990, unseating Joaquin Soria Terrazas who had held the position for two decades.

Warner, in tandem with CONCACAF General Secretary Chuck Blazer, took over an organization with a reported $140,000 in annual revenue.

He was appointed as a FIFA Vice-President in 1997. Warner was continuously trailed by corruption allegations throughout his time with FIFA and, despite an intent to run for re-election, ultimately resigned from his position in 2011.

2. He is the Former  Minister of Transport & National Security of Trinidad & Tobago

Jack Warner, David Beckham

David Beckham speaks with Jack Warner during a Training Session in Trinidad & Tobego. (Getty)

In addition to his career as an executive with both FIFA and CONCACAF, Warner has built a long-standing political career in his native Trinidad & Tobago.

In October 2007, Warner was elected as the United National Congress Alliance chairman and co-leader and helped lead the party in the nation’s General Election. They won 15 of 41 available seats and Warner was elected as the Member of Parliament for Chaguanas West.

After the 2010 election in Trinidad & Tobago, Warner was appointed the Works and Transport Minister but opponents questioned his ability to serve efficiently in both a political aspect and as a FIFA executive. Warner remained in both positions and even advanced to the position of Minister of National Security.

However, Warner’s relations, and corruption, with FIFA was never far behind.

His 2011 resignation from international soccer did not, technically, force his political hand, a videotape played during his disciplinary process was made public and referred to the Attorney General of Trinidad & Tobego. Warner eventually resigned as Minister of National Security on April 21, 2013.

3. Warner Was Accused off Profiting From Black Market FIFA Ticket Sales in the Early 2000’s

Jack Warner, FIFA

Jack Warner addresses the audience during the draw of the FIFA U-17 World Cup Mexico 2011. (Getty)

In late 2002, allegations emerged that Warner, through privately owned shares in Simpaul, a travel and holiday company, had profited over $350,000 from selling FIFA World Cup tickets that year.

Warner was not immediately brought up on charges or even under investigation but the Trinidad and Tobago Express published a series of exposes in 2005, detailing how Simpaul continued to offer marked-up FIFA World Cup tickets.

FIFA started an investigation following the 2006 World Cup in Germany and the organization’s auditors Ernst & Young found that Warner’s family had made a profit of upwards of $1 million. Warner was chastised by FIFA’s ethics committee but absolved him after he had claimed he severed connections with Simpaul.

This, however, was just the tip of Warner’s controversy-filled iceberg.

4. He Resigned From All FIFA Positions in 2011

Jack Warner, FIFA


Warner was a powerful international soccer figure for years and, after decades, the whispers of his ties to corruption and wrong-doing finally caught up with him.

In addition to the allegations of black market ticket selling during several World Cup events, Warner was accused making request for personal payments, attempting to sway votes in the 2018 World Cup bid as well as general mismanagement CONCACAF’s funds.

Despite threats to release a “football tsunami” in the wake of FIFA’s allegations, Warner officially resigned from his positions in May 2011 following a suspension by the organization’s ethics committee. Of course, he did not go down without a fight.

Warner retaliated by criticizing FIFA president  Sepp Blatter and Jérôme Valcke, the world governing body’s secretary-general. He questioned the integrity of both officials and sited Valcke of accusing Qatar of having “bought” the rights to host the 2022 World Cup.

Since his resignation, Warner has, on the surface, cut all ties to the international soccer world, serving only as an adviser to the Trinidad and Tobago Football Federation. That is, of course, until his arrest on Wednesday morning.

5. Warner Is Denying Any Wrong-Doing After His Arrest

The FIFA's offices in Zurich, Switzerland. (Getty)

The FIFA’s offices in Zurich, Switzerland. (Getty)

Warner was quick to respond to this latest round of allegations following the move by Swiss authorities on Wednesday morning.

He told the Associated Press:

I have been afforded no due process and I have not even been questioned in this matter. I reiterate that I am innocent of any charges. I have walked away from the politics of world football to immerse myself in the improvement of lives in this country where I shall, God willing, die.

Four men have already pleaded guilty in the U.S. football corruption investigation, which, per ESPN, involves bribes totaling more than $100 million. Warner, however, remains firm in his denial.

The former FIFA executive, speaking publicly for the first time, maintains that he has fought corruption throughout his career and also questioned the timing of the arrests, when, as he noted, “FIFA is assembled for elections to select a president who is universally disliked by the international community.”

Warner has sense changed his tune, however, and, according to several reports has surrendered to Fraud Squad offices after the Trinidad attorney general issued a provisional arrest warrant for him.

CCN TV6 followed up by reporting that the Trinidad magistrate granted Warner a $2.5 million bail, citing that he must surrender his passport and report Arouca police twice a week. This now means that Warner, in all likelihood, will face extradition to the United States sooner rather than later.