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Intelligence Policing

“I am not sure anything could have been done to prevent the corruption,” says Alexandra Wrage

When hundreds of anti-fraud professionals from Europe gather in Brussels on 22-20 March for the 2016 ACFE European Fraud Conference, president and founder of TRACE International, Alexandra Wrage, hopes that she can shed some light on corruption and compliance issues around the world, including those affecting football’s governing body.

 

As both an anti-corruption expert and a former member of FIFA’s Independent Governance Committee, she believes not much could have prevented the FIFA scandal that continues to unfold. She said, “The problems at FIFA were so widespread and so broadly accepted, that I am not sure anything could have been done to prevent the corruption. The problems, and especially the sense of entitlement, had been entrenched for decades … it seemed that Mr. Blatter and his friends were almost untouchable.”

She believes the answer is not to disband FIFA, but rather entrust an interim team to come in and clean house. She recommends, “They could push through the reforms that are needed, including installing truly independent members on the Executive Committee, open the books to the public, and then oversee an independent election. Whatever steps are taken, they’re going to have to be bold if they’re to restore public confidence in the organization.”

At the conference, she will share her thoughts on not only the FIFA scandal, but important issues she sees through her work at TRACE International regarding global anti-bribery standards and the importance of setting the right tone at the top when implementing controls to prevent corruption. She will be joined at the conference by other keynote speakers including award-winning investigative journalist and acclaimed author Anita Raghavan, Chief Commissioner of the Belgian Federal Police Johan Denolf, Head of the Security Division and General Services Division, International Court of Justice Maarten Daman, Attorney Mark Livschitz and Deputy Training Director of the Association of Certified Fraud Examiners Liseli Pennings, CFE.