On February 15, the program ‘Que t’hi jugues’ of SER Catalunya and AS uncovered the ‘Negreira Case’. The payments from Barcelona between 2001 and 2018 to José María Enríquez Negreira, vice president of the Technical Committee of Referees between 1994 and 2018, came to light. Since then the investigation stages have been burning incessantly.
The case began to be investigated in 2019 with the tax returns filed by Barcelona between 2015 and 2018 with payments related to Dasnil 95 and Nisdal, companies that belonged to Negreira. Once the ‘Negreira Case’ is known by all, the “abbreviated procedure” of Justice begins with the proceedings. It is requested to take a statement from those investigated and denounced: Josep María Bartomeu, Sandro Rosell, Albert Soler, Òscar Grau and Barcelona as a legal entity. Joan Laporta, current president, will testify as a witness.
The Prosecutor’s Office presented a complaint to Barcelona on March 7 for continued corruption in the businesses that the judge admitted and that she sent the Civil Guard to find out the “reason” for the payments. While the State Attorney General ordered the case to be transferred to anti-corruption.
The Spanish football organizations have taken steps forward. The Federation initiated a request for confidential information on the case. The league, a person in the case along with the RFEF, CSD, 40 teams and Real Madrid, denounced the situation before UEFA and does not rule out going to FIFA shortly, as long as the Federation does not go, since the leagues do not have direct recognition as It does happen in UEFA. The president of LaLiga and member of the UEFA Executive Committee knows that Barcelona cannot be penalized in Spain because the Sports Law establishes that very serious cases prescribe after three years. The last payment to Enríquez Negreira was made five years ago, in 2018. Thus, in national territory they can only enter through criminal way. A path that was taken after the complaint of Estrada Fernández, First VAR referee and the Barcelona Prosecutor’s Office. To this they added LaLiga and the Federation.
The clock keeps ticking and the time for UEFA and FIFA has come. The institutions of European and world football showed their concern once the news was known. ACE revealed that UEFA has opened an investigation against Barcelona on Thursday for the ‘Negreira Case’. The entity chaired by Ceferin will study whether there is a “legal violation” from the culé club in the earthquake that has shaken football and they insist that they will go to the end. If they make the decision to sanction the culés for irregularities against their disciplinary code, the sanctions They could leave Barça without playing any of the UEFA competitions for a certain time (Champions, Europa League or Conference). UEFA can sanction in a short period of time. In the case of FIFA, the body led by Infantino can enter the case ex officio.