FC Barcelona accused of corruption in the case of paying money to arbitration officials


Text: Monte Carlo International/AFP

Barcelona (AFP) – The Spanish judiciary has accused FC Barcelona, two former presidents of it, and former refereeing official Jose Maria Enriques Negrera of “corruption”, “breach of trust” and “falsifying commercial records” in the case of suspicious payments from the Catalan club to Negrera, according to what was announced. A court in Barcelona on Friday, March 10, 2023.

The prosecutions of the Public Prosecutor in Barcelona target the club in its legal capacity, in addition to its former presidents, Josep Bartomeu and Sandro Rosell.

The case relates to alleged payments made by Barcelona to Negrera, the former vice-president of the Technical Referee Committee, to provide the club with advice and verbal advice on referee-related topics.

Accusations were also brought against Oscar Grau and Albert Soler, two former members of Bartomeu's team.

"FC Barcelona obtained and maintained a highly confidential verbal agreement with José María Enriques Negrera whereby he, in his capacity as Vice-President of the Technical Arbitration Committee and for money, performs actions that give FC Barcelona preference in the referees' decisions in the matches played by the club and, consequently, in the results and competitions," the prosecution said.

The prosecution indicated that the Catalan club paid a total of more than 7.3 million euros to Negrera between 1994 and 2018.

The accusations come just days after current Barcelona president Joan Laporta confirmed that his club had "never bought referees".

"Let's be clear, Barcelona never bought referees, and Barca never had any intention of buying referees, ever," Laporta said Tuesday.

Last month, Laporta launched a violent attack on Javier Tebas, president of the Spanish Football League, accusing him of "fabricating a campaign against Barcelona."

And Tebas considered that Laporta should resign “if he did not explain well or in a more logical way why” the club paid this money to Enriques Negrera.

Klopp: What Mohamed Salah presented will not be forgotten because of Haaland's numbers

Kahraba scores the third goal for Al-Ahly in the Tunisian Esperance net