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Surprise witness at FIFA trial — singer Kevin Jonas

Thursday, December 07, 2017

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NEW YORK, United States (AFP) — Boy band star Kevin Jonas testified Thursday as a surprise witness for the prosecution at the FIFA corruption trial.

The member of the Jonas Brothers, dressed all in black, took the stand for less than three minutes to confirm that a concert allegedly attended by one of the suspects had actually taken place.

On trial over the largest graft scandal in world soccer history are three South American football executives accused of taking huge bribes in exchange for the rights to broadcast football tournaments.

One of those three, Juan Angel Napout, of Paraguay, former vice president of the South American football federation Conmebol, allegedly received $10,000 tickets to a Paul McCartney concert in Argentina in 2010.

This was allegedly part of a larger bribe of a million dollars to secure the rights to the Copa America in 2015.

Napout's lawyers have questioned that such a concert ever took place.

Jonas was produced as a witness to say that in fact it did because he himself went to it.

"Any time you get to see Paul McCartney, it's pretty special," Jonas, 30, testified.

Jonas has no relation to Napout and did not attend the concert with him. He took the stand simply to say the concert was held.

The other two defendants on trial in New York are Jose Maria Marin, 85, former president of Brazil's Football Confederation, and Manuel Burga, who led soccer in Peru until 2014.

All three are charged with racketeering, wire fraud and money laundering.

The careers of the heartthrob boy band the Jonas Brothers -- Kevin, Nick and Joe -- took off took off with the Disney movie "Camp Rock" in 2008. They have since disbanded.

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