The Swiss attorney general’s office (OAG) has opened criminal proceedings against former FIFA secretary general Jerome Valcke and beIN Media Group CEO Nasser Al-Khelaifi in connection to the awarding of World Cup media rights for 2026 and 2030.
The proceedings relate to an ongoing OAG investigation into Valcke that began in March 2016 and was opened on “suspicion of various acts of criminal mismanagement”.
Findings obtained in that process have led to a separate line of inquiry involving PSG president Al-Khelaifi.
The OAG stressed “no one has been on remand” and “the presumption of innocence applies”.
An official statement read: “It is suspected that Jerome Valcke accepted undue advantages from a businessman in the sports rights sector in connection with the award of media rights for certain countries at the FIFA World Cups in 2018, 2022, 2026 and 2030 and from Nasser Al-Khelaifi in connection with the award of media rights for certain countries at the FIFA World Cups in 2026 and 2030.”
Addresses in France, Greece, Italy and Spain have been raided in relation to the investigation.
Valcke – who was interviewed on Thursday – is currently in the process of appealing against his 10-year ban from football at the Court of Arbitration for Sport.
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.