QCOSTARICA – Eduardo Li, the former president of the Costa Rican Soccer Federation (Federación Costarricense de Fútbol – Fedefútbol), being held at the Metropolitan Detention Center in Brooklyn, New York, was denied bail.
Li appeared Wednesday morning before Judge Robert Levy, who rejected the bail package presented last week. Levy found Li’s proposal not sufficient guarantee to meet bail payment, scheduling another hearing for February 23.
Li’s initial proposal was to pay a US$300,000 cash and pledge US$4.7 million dollars in family assets, in addition to reside in an apartment in New York city under 24 hour electronic surveillance.
Prosecutors opposed Li’s proposal, calling instead for bail of US$10 million to US$15 million, with US$5 million to US$7 million of that payable in cash, saying the Tico poses a flight risk.
“The most precious thing I have are my children. I give them my properties and let them do what they want,” he told the Judge during the hearing.
This was Li’s second bail hearing, the first on December 18, 2015 after being extradited from Switzerland, were he was being held since his arrest on May 27, 2015, two days before he was to have been elected to the FIFA executive committee in representation of CONCACAF, football’s governing body in North and Central America as well as the Caribbean.
Li faces a number of charges, including racketeering conspiracy in the first degree, two counts of wire fraud conspiracy, two for money laundering conspiracy and two for money laundering.
The indictment alleges that between 2009 and May 2015, when he was arrested in Switzerland, Li conspired to accept and receive more than $700,000 in bribes in exchange for awarding marketing rights to different parties of Costa Rica’s national team with the company, Traffic Sport.
Li says he is innocent.