Criminal corruption case opened against PSG chief over World Cup TV rights

Criminal corruption case opened against PSG chief over World Cup TV rights

Valcke was alleged to have received "undue advantages" from the businessman, who was not identified, to award "media rights for certain countries" for four World Cups from 2018 through 2030.

Swiss prosecutors on Thursday opened a criminal investigation into Paris Saint-Germain's chairman Nasser al-Khelaifi over suspected bribery linked to World Cup media rights.

Prosecutors also said it was working with authorities in France, Greece, Italy and Spain, where properties had been searched.

His involvement is a direct link to Qatar, host of the 2022 World Cup, in investigations led by the United States and Swiss into football corruption.

Then, FIFA gave the Swiss federal office a report and evidence from its then-ethics prosecutor - former U.S. Attorney Michael Garcia - into the dual World Cup bidding contest won by Russian Federation and Qatar.

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In a statement issued Thursday, the OAG said new proceedings have been opened "primarily on the basis of findings obtained by the OAG in this earlier proceeding".

Al-Khelaifi, 43, was appointed PSG chairman and chief executive in 2011 and was instrumental in the French club's acquisition of Neymar from Barcelona in August for a world record fee. BeIN has also acquired a broad portfolio of rights including from European soccer body UEFA for the Champions League and national team matches.

The investigation was opened in March and is separate from a probe Switzerland launched against Valcke in March 2016 over alleged criminal mismanagement during his tenure as deputy to FIFA's disgraced former president Sepp Blatter.

Valcke, a French national, was in Switzerland on Wednesday arguing an appeal at the Court of Arbitration for Sport in Lausanne, where he was trying to overturn his 10-year ban from football over graft.

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