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Swiss open criminal case against ex-FIFA official Valcke, beIN CEO

12 October 2017

The Office of the Attorney General of Switzerland (OAG) said in a statement that a case was opened on March 20, 2017, against Al-Khelaifi, Valcke and an unnamed businessman from the sports rights sector. The investigation concerns the awarding of broadcast rights to BeIN Media Group.

Prosecutors claim that Valcke accepted the bribes from Al-Khelaifi with the intention of awarding media rights to "certain countries" for the World Cups due to be held in 2026 and 2030.

Swiss federal prosecutors announced on Thursday they are investigating suspected bribes offered to former Federation Internationale de Football Association secretary general Jerome Valcke to award the broadcast rights for the 2026 and 2030 World Cup to Qatari-owned BeIN Media Group, where Nasser Al-Khelaifi (pictured, left) is the chief executive.

Valcke's fall from grace came as part of a massive corruption scandal that shook FIFA's foundations, with Blatter banned for six years on charges relating to a two million Swiss francs (1.8 million euros) payment to then-UEFA chief Michel Platini.

Major storm causes chaos in Durban, South Africa
A container ship blocks the harbour mouth in Durban , South Africa, October 10, 2017 in this still image obtained from a social media video.

The Frenchman was found guilty of a series of breaches of FIFA's code of ethics and was sacked in January 2016, though he has always denied any wrongdoing. He filed an appeal to the ban with the Court of Arbitration of Sport (CAS) in February of this year.

Swiss prosecutors have opened criminal proceedings against Paris Saint-Germain chairman Nasser Al-Khelaifi.

The 2018 and 2022 World Cup will be played in Russian Federation and Qatar respectively, while the 2026 and 2030 tournaments have not yet been awarded.

Swiss open criminal case against ex-FIFA official Valcke, beIN CEO