The Chelsea`s owner accused of controlling the right of non Chelsea`s players
A new campaign of journalistic revelations on the opaque world of global finance. And once again football is brought up. It’s called FinCEN Files and it releases a mass of documents on international money laundering and the inert, if not complacent, the role of the global banking system.
The International Consortium of Investigative Journalism coordinates the operation. And among the numerous dossiers that in the past few hours have been made known by the international press, there is one concerning Roman Abramovich, owner of Chelsea.
The Russian tycoon is mentioned about a company already known to those who follow the events of Football Leaks: Leiston Holdings, based in the British Virgin Islands. Repeatedly associated with Israeli super-agent Pini Zahavi, Leiston Holdings is now connected with Abramovich.
Through it, the patron of Chelsea would have controlled the economic rights of players not registered with Chelsea. In particular, the case of Peruvian winger Andre Carrillo is noted, who in the 2014-15 edition of the UEFA Champions League faces Chelsea twice playing with the Sporting Portugal shirt.
And therefore, on those occasions, the owner of Chelsea is in a position to control the economic rights of a player of the opposing team.
Among other things, Carrillo himself will be at the centre of a heavy conflict between Pini Zahavi and the then president of Sporting, Bruno de Carvalho. And in that circumstance, the name of Leiston Holdings is associated with the claim for payment, motivated by the fact that Sporting Portugal does not accept an offer from Leicester for Carrillo, which was deemed unsatisfactory by the Alvalade club.
The mechanism that determines this disagreement is now revealed by FinCEN Files. In 2011 – when the president of Sporting Portugal is Luís Godinho Lopes – Leiston concluded a Third Party Investment agreement with the green-and-white club, financing 50% of the acquisition of Carrillo with 1 million euros.
Among the clauses of the agreement between the Leonino club and the fund, there is one that establishes the following: if Sporting rejects an offer of at least 6 million euros for the sale of Carrillo, they will still have to pay 45% to Leiston of the value of the rejected offer.
The TPO / TPI agreements are full of halter clauses like this one. As specifies the article published by the BBC website, Leiston has owned the rights of two other Sporting players: Gael Etock and Valentim Viola (the latter, coincidentally, will pass through Apollon Limassol and Royal Excel Mouscron, two companies alongside Zahavi and a lot of talk in the Football Leaks).
Chelsea is also reported to have pre-emption right over some of Leiston’s controlled players. The names? Maybe we will meet them in the next few days.