‘Barcelona paid 6 million instead of 1.4 million to vice president union committee’
Soccer club FC Barcelona’s involvement in a possible corruption scandal appears larger than initially revealed. According to Spanish daily El Mundo, the club has made fraudulent payments of more than 6 million euros to a company owned by the former vice president of the country’s referee commission, José Maria Enriquez Negreira, since 2001. Earlier there was talk of 1.4 million euros.
After the resignation of the official in question, payments would have continued, the newspaper said. The man threatened to expose the scandal. Spain’s public prosecutor’s office has already indicated it is investigating.
The Catalan club confirmed the payments earlier this week. Barcelona took “technical reports” on arbitration management from an “external consultant,” but that would be “a common practice for professional soccer clubs.
Coach Xavi of the Spanish league leader wants to wait for further investigations before commenting on them. However, he did say, “If I found that we were winning by cheating, I would go home…”