Verdict surprises attorney in FIFA bribery case


December 28, 2017
Manuel Burga, the former president of Peru's soccer federation, leaves federal court in the Brooklyn borough of New York, last Friday.


An attorney says he knew the former South American football official he represented was innocent, but had expected a jury to convict him anyway.

Bruce Udolf says the Brooklyn federal court jury asked a question about wire fraud Friday, convincing him it would convict Manuel Burga. Instead, the jury Tuesday exonerated the 60-year-old former president of Peru's soccer federation in a case connected to the FIFA bribery scandal.

Udolf said the outcome left him wanting to do cartwheels outside court.

The attorney ran the Miami federal prosecutor's public integrity unit for five years in the 1990s. He says his one-man legal defence practice in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, left him feeling he was up against Goliath and all the resources of the federal government.

Burga's two co-defendants were convicted last week.

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