Ex-CEO details Cup TV bribes
Fox Sports partnered with a South American marketing firm to make millions of dollars in bribes to high-ranking soccer officials in exchange for lucrative broadcasting rights to major tournaments, the marketing company’s former CEO testified Tuesday at a U.S. corruption trial.
Alejandro Burzaco, former CEO of the firm based in Argentina, testified that Fox and other broadcasters were involved in a scheme to pay bribes — concealed using offshore side entities and sham contracts — that secured rights for the Copa America and other events.
As evidence of the scheme, prosecutors at the trial at a federal court in New York City produced a 2008 agreement for the partnership to pay $3.7 million to a holding company in Turks and Caicos that was an alleged conduit for the bribes. They say it was signed by a former Fox executive.
Asked whom he kept informed about the bribe arrangements, Burzaco responded, “Fox Pan American Sports. Fox Sports.”
The testimony came on the second day of the U.S. trial of three former South American soccer officials accused of taking bribes in a sprawling corruption investigation of FIFA, the sport’s governing body. Burzaco, who has pleaded guilty to racketeering conspiracy and other charges, has emerged as a key witness against Jose Maria Marin, Manuel Burga and Juan Angel Napout. World Cup: Denmark qualified for next year’s World Cup after Christian Eriksen scored a superb hat trick in a 5-1 victory over Ireland in their playoff in Dublin. Next year’s tournament in Russia will be Denmark’s fifth World Cup appearance and first since 2010.