COLOMBO, Sri Lanka (AP) — Former FIFA executive committee member Vernon Manilal Fernando said Thursday he is "very disturbed" over a life ban from football and will appeal the decision at the Court of Arbitration for Sport.
A statement issued by his lawyers said Fernando was "not surprised, (but) he is very disturbed with it" and that he "feels that a life ban on him is unfair and harsh."
It also said the ban had been handed down "as deterrent for Mr. Fernando exercising his right of appeal within the FIFA process."
FIFA on Wednesday said its appeals panel upheld a request from ethics prosecutor Michael Garcia to increase the Sri Lankan official's eight-year ban to a lifetime sanction.
Fernando's own appeal to overturn the original ban imposed in April was dismissed.
"On legal advise, Mr. Fernando has no alternative but appeal against this decision to the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS), an independent tribunal outside the FIFA process", the statement said. "Mr. Fernando is confident that he will be able to receive justice before CAS."
FIFA said Fernando broke rules on bribery and corruption, accepting gifts and other benefits, along with other ethics violations.
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