24 March 2023
NEWS RELEASE – FOR IMMEDIATE USE
BARCELONA COURT HAS ALREADY INDICTED CLUB ON CHARGES OF CORRUPTION AND PROVIDING FALSE BUSINESS RECORDS
KCS Group Europe’s Director of Operations, Leon Goldman, a former investigator at the Football Association, says with UEFA now launching an investigation into allegations about FC Barcelona, the club is facing an expensive legal battle on two fronts.
Earlier this month, a court in Barcelona indicted the club on charges of corruption, breach of trust and keeping false business records.
Prosecutors allege Barca paid $8.4m to a former vice-president of Spain’s referees’ committee in return for favourable adjudications.
FC Barcelona denies any wrongdoing, but admits paying money to Jose Maria Enriquez Negreira, and his company Dasnil 95 between 2001 and 2018.
The club claims Negreira was a ‘technical advisor’ and it paid the sums for video reports as a coaching aid.
UEFA has announced its Ethics and Disciplinary committee will also look into the payments.
Goldman, former Integrity Investigator at The Football Association in London,says: “While the criminal inquiry may take precedence, it is possibly the UEFA Ethics and Disciplinary committee that the Catalan club fears most.
“The minimum expectation for a club like FC Barcelona is Champions League qualification. Take that away and the financial implications for a club, already heavily in the red, are potentially devastating.
“It remains to be seen what appetite UEFA will have in going after one of the biggest draws in world football. However, the European body has to be seen to regulate and protect the beautiful game.”
Goldman’s previous role at the FA was to ensure the rules and codes of conduct in professional football were upheld. He investigated fraud, anti-doping, football betting, corruption, discrimination, financial irregularities, and social media issues.
KCS Group Europe is a leading provider of corporate security and intelligence risks. It operates discreetly around the world, on complex cases of fraud, theft, corruption and market dynamics.