Premier League

370 million euro lawsuit against Leicester City owner

The company that owns the 2016 Premier League champions, King Power, is being sued for colluding with airport authorities to avoid paying taxes to the Thai government.

370 million euro lawsuit against Leicester City owner

A Thai anti-corruption court on Monday accepted a lawsuit accusing duty-free giant King Power, the company that owns Leicester City Football Club, of owing the state 370 million euros ($420 million) in unpaid taxes.

Tax avoidance suit against King Power

The case is a rare attack on an ultra-rich firm run by one of the kingdom's best-connected billionaires. The suit, filed by an anti-graft official, accuses King Power executives of colluding with airport authorities to pay only three percent of the company's annual revenue instead of the contracted 15 percent.

The plaintiff, Charnchai Issarasenanark, said the graft caused the state 14 billion baht (€370 million euros) in damages.

"The court agreed to hear the case," an official from Bangkok's Corruption court told reporters.

King Power, whose lawyer declined to comment, has previously denied any wrongdoing and filed a number of defamation lawsuits against Charnchai. The progress of the case is a rare setback for the company's founder Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha.

Riyad Mahrez and Jamie Vardy of Leicester City.

King Power financial growth

Starting with a single shop in Bangkok in 1989, Vichai has built an estimated fortune of $2.9 billion through his duty-free empire. The firm now has a near-monopoly on duty-free sales in Thailand's main airports, plus a satellite mall in Bangkok favoured by Chinese tourists.

Vichai's reputation for canny decision-making surged after the 2016 English Premier League championship win by minnows Leicester City, which his family bought for an estimated $58 million in 2010.

The 60-year-old has also carefully navigated Thailand's treacherous political waters of recent years, frequently rubbing shoulders with the elite.

Premier League

Table PTS W D L
11Newcastle 14 4 2 5
12Leicester 13 3 4 4
13Southampton 13 3 4 4
Full standing
Next matches
Leicester - M. City S-18/11 16:00
West Ham - Leicester V-24/11 21:00
Leicester - Tottenham M-28/11 20:45

*Update 13 de noviembre de 2017