Qatar World Cup | The folders that the UDEF found in a registry in Barcelona: “FIFA offer”, “Gulf” and “UEFA”

On December 14, 2015, seven agents from the Investigation Group of the Judicial Police Brigade of the Superior Police Headquarters in Catalonia handed over to the Central Court number 3 of the National Court the documentation they had found during the search of the office’s headquarters of the Catalan businessman Gerard Romy, in Barcelona. The United States authorities, specifically the FBI and a New York Courtthey had started together with the Prosecutor’s Office what is known as FIFA-Gatean investigation on the alleged corruption within the International Football Federationbut also about the choice of Qatar as the venue for the 2022 World Cup. And for this reason they demanded that the Spanish Justice search the headquarters of the Imagina World company on Avenida Diagonal in search of evidence of possible bites.

And among these pieces of evidence, the agents included a hard drive to which they had copied several folders they found on Romy’s computer called “Champions”, “AL Qualifiers”, “Copa América”, “Footb Rights”, “FIFA”, “Golfo”, “Imagina”, “Inversiones”, “Medialuso”, “FIFA Offer”, “Tournaments and Competition” and “UEFA”, as stated in the aforementioned documentation, to which El Periódico de España, from the Prensa Ibérica group, has had access. These indications were sent to the United States Justice, which has prosecuted Romy.

In the record of the entry into the office, it is stated that the agent writes it and shows her disagreement with Romy’s actions during the search: “It is stated that the person being investigated is absent from the office subject to the search continuously and starts talking with people in his office, and this despite to the requirements of the undersignedthat it must be present in the registry”, can be read.

FBI presence

However, it is Romy himself who during the search of his office explains “to the FBI which are the folders on the computer that may be of interest to the cause“continues the police document, which ensures that these tests were inside a computer folder called”Saudi Arabia“.

An order of December 14, 2015, which appears among the documents of the “FIFA-Gate” case to which this newsroom has had access, shows the evidence that was already weighing against Romy, a partner of Jaume Roures, also a Catalan businessman: “From the results of the investigations carried out by the United States Attorney’s Office together with the FBI and the Criminal Investigations Division of the US Internal Revenue Service, it is inferred that the Spanish citizen Gerard Romy, among other investigated subjects, with whom he collaborates Jonathan Cumming, CFO of Imagina Group, accepted and/or facilitated bribes, kickbacks, and other types of illicit payments made to officials of the International Football Federation (FIFA), and the laundering of payments and proceeds from bribes”.

The investigation of the United States specifies, according to the order of the National Court, that several Managers from Honduras, Costa Rica, El Salvador and Guatemala, between 2008 and 2015, “received bribes” in exchange for getting their national federations to sell broadcasting rights and marketing for World Cup qualifying matches.

A Spanish company

These bites, always according to the car, were paid by the firm Media World LLC. a company from Miami (USA), a subsidiary of Imagina US, which is part of a business group whose headquarters are located in Barcelona. “Gerard Romy, as a shareholder of Imagina US, was aware of the bribery scheme and agreed with it.“concludes the resolution.

Precisely a protected witness explained that Romy was in charge of traveling to Miami to find out about the efforts to obtain the broadcasting rights. of the different Central American soccer federations. “During these meetings, the protected witness reported regularly to Romy about bribes paid on behalf of Media World to the officials of the UNCAF federations in order to obtain the rights to the qualifying matches of the World Cup”, continues the order of the National Court, which recalls that the witness assured that he spoke with Romy that they would use consultancy contracts to hide irregular payments.

In 2012, a company related to the Spanish Imagina agreed to pay a bribe of three million euros to Jeffrey Webb, a director of the Caribbean Football Association to get a contract of 23 million: “The two companies signed a separate agreement to share the cost of paying the bribe […]. It was Gerard Romy, on behalf of Media Worldwho entered into the agreement to share the cost of bribery”, concludes the aforementioned order, with which the National Court authorized the



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