Domingo, 17 Diciembre, 2017

PSG - Fifa to investigate Al-Khelaifi chairman

Swiss open criminal case against ex-FIFA official Valcke, beIN CEO Paris Saint-Germain chairman Nasser Al-Khelaifi subject of criminal proceedings
Eleena Tovar | 13 Octubre, 2017, 20:54

The OAG said it had also opened a new criminal proceeding against Valcke and an unnamed figure in the sports rights business, who is accused of having bribed Valcke in connection with the award of media rights for the 2018 World Cup in Russian Federation, 2022 in Qatar and the 2026 and 2030 tournaments.

Al-Khelaifi, chief executive officer of the Qatari beIN Media Group and chairman of Ligue 1 leaders PSG, is suspected of giving "undue advantages" to Jerome Valcke, the former secretary general of global football governing body FIFA, in connection to media rights for the 2026 and 2030 World Cups.

The Office of Switzerland's Attorney General (OAG) confirmed that the investigation concerns alleged bribes offered to Valcke in return for the Qatari-owned BeIn Sports being awarded the 2026 and 2030 World Cup rights.

The Swiss attorney general's office (OAG) announced on Thursday that both Valcke and Al-Khelaifi were under investigation over those media rights, per the Guardian's David Conn.

Khelaifi, Valcke and the unnamed businessman are collectively suspected of bribery, fraud, criminal mismanagement and forgery of a document, in a criminal proceeding - effectively an investigation rather than charges - ongoing since 20 March this year. The new proceeding has been opened primarily on the basis of findings obtained by the OAG in this earlier proceeding.

It added that its representatives had interviewed Valcke in Switzerland as a suspect on Thursday.

Valcke was Sepp Blatter's right-hand man when the latter ran Federation Internationale de Football Association, the Swiss-based world soccer body. He has denied any wrongdoing.

Valcke was found guilty by FIFA's former ethics judge Hans-Joachim Eckert of misconduct over the sale of World Cup tickets, abuse of travel expenses, attempting to sell television rights below their market value and destruction of evidence.

The OAG said the case developed from the initial proceedings against Valcke, who on Wednesday testified at the Court of Arbitration for Sport in his appeal against a 10-year ban from football imposed by FIFA.