PSG owner President Nasser Al-Khelaifi charged over bribery scandal linked to purchase of Sardinia villa – The Sun

PSG President Nasser Al-Khelaifi has been indicted by Swiss prosecutors in a £1million-plus bribery scandal.

In a decision that embarrasses PSG, Fifa and Uefa, Qatari Al-Khelaifi stands accused of inciting disgraced ex-Fifa general secretary Jerome Valcke to commit aggravated criminal mismanagement.

According to the allegations, confirmed by the Swiss Attorney General, Valcke was refunded the £420,000 down payment he made for the purchase of a villa in Sardinia which had been purchased by Al-Khelaifi.

The Qatari, who is also head of broadcaster beIN Sport, then gave Frenchman Valcke, 59, exclusive use of the villa for 18 months without having to pay any rent – at an estimated value of up to £1.5m.

Valcke’s failure to report the arrangement before he was ousted from Fifa in 2015 – he was banned by world chiefs four months later – has brought the incitement charge.

An allegation that Al-Khelaifi also gave Valcke a luxury watch to gain influence over him in his Fifa role was found not to be substantiated.

And the Swiss authorities also halted their investigation into allegations of bribery in connection with the media rights for the 2026 and 2030 World Cups after Fifa confirmed last month it had reached an “amicable agreement” not to proceed with its own internal case.

The attorney general said: “As the bribery of private individuals was an offence prosecuted only on complaint, the withdrawal of that complaint meant the procedural requirement for prosecution was no longer met.”

Valcke was also indicted with accepting bribes, aggravated criminal mismanagement and falsifying documents, while an unnamed third businessman was jointly charged with the Qatari.

If proved the allegations carry a potential jail sentence of up to five years and Al-Khelaifi hit back by demanding the SWISS authorities should be investigated.

Al-Khelaifi is also a member of Uefa’s ruling executive committee through his role with the European Clubs Association although the charges relate to his position with beIN and not PSG.

In a blistering response, Al-Khelaifi trumpeted the dropping of the bribery allegations and added: “The three-year investigation has been characterised by constant leaks, misinformation and a seemingly relentless agenda to smear my reputation.

“I have requested the Swiss authorities open a criminal enquiry into the conduct of the investigation.”

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