The Public Prosecutors Ofiice has opened a probe into the Ligue 1 club's alleged profiling of potential academy players after a suit was lodged.
The Paris Public Prosecutor’s Office has opened an investigation in Ligue 1 giants Paris Saint-Germain for allegedly racially profiling potential signings for the club’s academy based on their country of origin, ethnicity and nationality, French judicial sources have confirmed to Spanish news agency EFE.
The Parisian authorities are also to launch an investigation into PSG’s alleged practice of “collating data of a personal nature by fraudulent, unjust or illicit means” and for collecting “personal details without authorization and for the storage and use of data that directly or indirectly makes reference to the ethnic or racial origin of players.
The investigation was initiated last Friday, according to judicial sources, after a lawsuit presented by the Worldwide Movement for Human Rights. Racial profiling for any purpose is illegal under French law.
PSG internal investigation found "no evidence" of discrimination
The case first came to light in the latest batch of Football Leaks documents published on November 8, which claimed PSG used the formula to profile potential academy players between 2013 and 2018, during which only one black player was signed by the club. PSG subsequently admitted to the existence of the form on the part of its scouting department but stressed it had been introduced “on the sole personal initiative of the head of this department” without the knowledge of the board.
Marc Westerloppe, who was in charge of the scouting department during the period in question, is reported to have said during a meeting that the club had too many “Caribbean and African players” and that the hierarchy wanted to sign more players of French origin.
PSG launched an internal investigation in the wake of the Football Leaks documents, but shelved it last week after finding “no evidence of discrimination” in the assessment and recruitment of academy players.