Nasser Al-Khelaifi, the chairman and CEO of Paris St. Germain, has declared himself “calm” ahead of a bribery investigation by Swiss prosecutors.
The investigation concerns alleged bribes offered to former FIFA secretary general Jerome Valcke to award 2026 and 2030 World Cup rights to Qatari-owned BeIN Media Group, the office of Switzerland’s attorney general said on Thursday.
The latest proceeding in a broader Swiss investigation of FIFA is against “Jerome Valcke, the chief executive officer of the BeIN Media Group LLC Nasser Al-Khelaifi, and a businessman in the sports rights sector,” federal prosecutors said.
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.
“Multiple premises were searched, assets were seized and interviews were conducted as a result of this joint operation,” the European justice body said in a statement.
beIN Sports issued the following statement.
“Following a request by the office of the Attorney General of Switzerland (OAG), the beINSPORTS offices in Boulogne-Billancourt (France) were searched this morning. The employees on-site cooperated with the authorities until the end of the search. beINMEDIAGROUP refutes all accusations made by OAG. The company willfully cooperate with the authorities and is confident as to the future developments of this investigation.”
Al-Khelaifi is scheduled to meet with the Swiss prosecutors next week, and spoke to reporters after PSG’s 4-0 win over Anderlecht in the Champions League.
“I have a meeting on the 25th,” the 43-year-old confirmed as he spoke for the first time since the investigation was announced. “I will go there to speak with the Swiss prosecutor. That is all. I came here for the match and everything continues as normal.
“Am I calm? Of course. We won 4-0. I am very happy. It was an important match for us. We are continuing our great work with our top players. I am very happy with the result.”