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Monday, October 15, 2012
ESPNsoccernet: October 16, 11:12 AM UK
FIFA's Bin Hammam returns to court

ESPN staff

Asian Football Confederation president Mohamed Bin Hammam has returned to the Court of Arbitration for Sport to challenge his provisional suspension by world football's governing body.

Bin Hammam, 63, had a lifetime ban overturned by the court this summer on the grounds of a lack of evidence.

The Qatari is fighting suspension as both the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) president and a member of FIFA's executive.

The provisional suspension was announced because he was the subject of a financial investigation by the AFC.

Bin Hammam has claimed his punishment is politically motivated because he challenged Sepp Blatter for the FIFA presidency last year.

The court will be asked to examine why he has been punished when other FIFA officials against whom allegations have been made have not been subject to sanctions.

They include the governing body's honorary president Joao Havelange, who was named as having been paid kickbacks in a court report into the scandal involving FIFA's former marketing agency ISL.

The court is also likely to be asked to look at an alleged conflict of interest surrounding Bermudan FA president Larry Mussenden, who chaired the FIFA appeals committee which rejected Bin Hammam's appeal against the provisional suspension last month.

A witness in the original case against Bin Hammam, which surrounded payments made to Caribbean football officials during the FIFA presidential campaign, Mussenden excused himself from taking part in an appeal committee decisions about Bin Hammam last year.

However, last month he was on the appeals committee, and Bin Hammam's lawyers are likely to raise that as a conflict of interest.

They are believed to be likely to claim an abuse of power by FIFA, and argue that the court should order the dropping of the provisional suspension. The ban is due to is due to expire on October 23 but is likely to be extended by 45 days.

Information from the Press Association was used in this report

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