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Brazil’s Havelange, longtime FIFA chief, dead: hospital

Joao Havelange, Brazil's corruption-tainted former FIFA president who helped bring the Olympic Games to Rio, has died at the age of 100, a hospital spokeswoman told AFP Tuesday.

The news, first given by Brazilian media, was confirmed by Andresa Feijo, spokeswoman for the Samaritano Hospital in Rio de Janeiro.

Samaritano was where Havelange had been treated for pneumonia in July.

President of the Brazilian Sports Confederation from 1956 to 1974, and head of world football governing body FIFA from 1974 to 1998, the imposing figure of Havelange helped Brazil win bids to host the 2014 World Cup and the 2016 Olympic Games.

He is credited with helping transform football into a global success story, but his legacy has been tarnished by serious corruption allegations. He resigned as honorary president of FIFA in 2013 after a report found he had taken bribes.

cdo-lbc/sms/jm

© 1994-2016 Agence France-Presse

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