ZURICH, Switzerland, June 11 (UPI) -- Walter De Gregorio, FIFA communications director, left his job Thursday, days after making a joke on television at his boss's expense.
De Gregorio "decided to relinquish his office with immediate effect," a FIFA statement read, adding he would serve as a consultant to the international soccer organization, currently involved in a corruption scandal, through the end of 2015. A 47-count indictment of 14 FIFA executives and clients was issued by thd U.S. Department. of Justice earlier this month, alleging bribery, racketing, wire fraud and money laundering.
In a recent interview on Swiss television, De Gregorio was asked, in Swiss-German: If FIFA President Sepp Blatter, his spokesman and the secretary-general (of FIFA) are all sitting in a car, who is driving? De Gregorio answered, "The police."
When the Dept. of Justice indictment was unsealed and announced, De Gregorio spun the story to indicate relief.
"This for FIFA is good," he said at a press conference in Zurich, Switzerland. "It is not good in terms of image, and it's not good in terms of reputation, but in terms of cleaning up, in terms of everything that we did in the last four years."