While the other FIFA officials convicted in a major corruption scandal have been paying for their sins by serving their prison sentences, former FIFA VP James Webb has been living comfortably in his Atlanta home, with his professional wife. They are known to have thrown some very nice parties there, for their affluent social circle. It has been six years since Webb entered a guilty plea, but it appears that he has been regarded as such a valuable cooperator that eleven times the Court has postponed his sentence, with the active assistance of the Department of Justice. What's wrong with this picture ? Justice is supposed to be blind.
Mr. Webb, who has enjoyed his freedom, instead of serving a sentence, has also benefited in another way from his cooperator status; he has escaped extradition to his native Cayman Islands, where he faces another major criminal case, due to the unfinished nature of his assistance. How can that in any way be justice ?
Most criminal defendants with long sentences are imprisoned after sentencing, to avoid their flight to avoid serving their time. If they are lucky enough to assist the DOJ in securing an indictment of another, or in seizing criminal assets, the prosecutor will file a rule 35 Motion for Reduction of Sentence, and the Court then shaves off a portion of their remaining sentence, giving them early release. Mr.Webb, however, is still a free man, six years on. Is he being rewarded for his cooperation, as well as proposed cooperation against even more senior FIFA officers (its President ?), so that he serves no prison time at all ?
He has obviously negotiated a special arrangement with prosecutors, who are clearly looking for bigger fish to fry. The preferential treatment accorded him by the DOJ should anger the American taxpayer, for the average defendant would have been transported to prison long ago. Unfortunately, most details of favored treatment accorded convicted cooperators are kept from public view, keeping the taxpayer in the dark about the true nature of the case. Only America's criminal defense lawyers know what's really going on behind the scenes, and they have good reason to stay silent; their clients quietly benefit.
If it became common knowledge, regarding how the guilty are rewarded, for assisting in the arrest of most wanted individuals, or the seizure of their criminal profits, there might just be legislation enacted to conduct oversight on this practice, or severely restrict its operation. If you are unaware of how widespread this practice is, get a subscription to PACER, where you can read the actual case filings, and see for yourself . You may be angry, but that could be a beginning of something interesting.
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