Significant amounts of money in the form of transfer fees cross borders annually, which raises the spectre of money laundering.

As such, attempts are being made to ensure there is better control of these transactions, from the beginning to the end, to guarantee that the monies are channelled to the intended recipients.

Emily Devlin, Fifa’s director of corporate legal and compliance division, said the world body is trying to manage the transfer fee process a little better and to essentially control the transactions from end to end.

“This is so that things like solidarity payments, which are very often not paid to the training clubs, are properly routed to them. We can see where the money is coming from, and where it is going,” said Devlin.

“Sports organisations and the authorities have to work constantly to try and keep up with how money is crossing borders, and how it is being used, as well as the processes (to launder money) used by criminals.

“I’m not saying criminals are involved in the transfer system, but the money should go to the right place.”

She was hopeful that Fifa’s Clearing House would spark a change and that stakeholders would see a “much more efficient and better system” in place.

Following Fifa’s council decision in 2018, the world body started working on the Clearing House with the vision of automating distribution and payments of training rewards between clubs.

According to Fifa, the Clearing House will be a separate entity under its full control, in charge of processing payments related to training rewards between clubs all around the world.

Devlin said this during yesterday’s session: ‘Name of the Game: Follow the Money’ in the on-going Sport Integrity Week 2021. The five-day event, which started on Monday, is organised by Sport Integrity Global Alliance (SIGA).

Twentytwo13 is the media partner for the global event.

Devlin also spoke about the realities revolving around football bribery.

“It’s hard to secure a conviction because very often, the nexus between the bribe and the advantage, is the missing part of the chain and so, the lure in that regard doesn’t help us in trying to get a bribery conviction.

“This is because sometimes it is hard to prove that the advantage taken was directly linked to the particular commercial advantage. That is a problem,” she added.

The other speakers at the session were Italy’s head of the 5th Division, Department for Public Security at the Ministry of Interior, Central Directorate of Criminal Police, Roberto Ribaudo; chair of the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development’s Working Group on Bribery in International Business Transactions, Drago Kos; and SIGA chief executive officer Emanuel Macedo de Medeiros.

Today’s topics will revolve around sports betting. To find out more about Sport Integrity Week 2021, visit SIGA’s website at