Barcelona unable to explain Negreira payments to the Tax Office and Prosecutor’s Office
Spanish daily newspaper El País has had access to official statements made by Barça employees related to the arrangements with Negreira.
El Clásico is almost upon yet it’s Barcelona’s off-field activities which continue to make headlines. The Catalans have so far not given any explanation to the Prosecutor’s Office for the payments made by the club in the so-called ‘Negreira scandal’. A few days ago, Enric Masip, deputy to the club’s president in sporting matters, stated that the club were unable to reveal details of why the payments were made because the case is under secrecy in summary proceedings. However, Spanish daily newspaper El País has accessed statements made by club’s employees which were requested by the Tax Office and the Prosecutor’s Office and discovered that no explanations were, in fact, given.
Barça doesn’t “does not know the details of the formalisation of the verbal contract”
“No contract was formalised in writing with said company [Dasnil]. The club does not know the details of the formalisation of the verbal contract as they date back to 2001. That is, the people who must have negotiated those contracts are no longer employees of the club″, read Barcelona’s written response to the authorities in reference to an investigation carried out by the Tax Office into two companies who received money from the club, Dasnil and Nilsad, which is how the ‘Negreira scandal’ was uncovered. “It cannot be stated who, on behalf of FCB, was responsible for ordering the services,” claims one of the documents which is part of the judicial inquiry.
How much did Barcelona pay Negreira and when?
Barcelona paid €7.3 million between 2001 and 2018 to José María Enríquez Negreira, the former vice-preisdent of the Spanish Soccer Federation’s referees’ committee, for technical reports on referees. The payments ceaased in 2018, coinciding with the Negreria’s departure from the role. No club employee has been able to explain the real reason for these payments, beyond the concepts that appear on invoices include: “Little more can be said since, as noted, the people who negotiated these contracts are no longer part of the club’s staff,” replied María Isabel M., on behalf of Barcelona, to the Tax Office.
Barça were made to sign a compliance agreement by the Tax Office in which they agreed to regularise corporate tax and VAT for the years 2015, 2016, and 2017. The club acknowledged that it should not have deducted either VAT or corporate tax from the invoices paid to Dasnil and Nilsad, which were classified as “gratuitous acts” in legal terms, meaning that the payer makes the payment without expecting anything in return. According to sources consulted by AS, this means that Barcelona have effectively accepted that the have committed a tax offence, although it will not have criminal consequences as the agreement was reached through administrative channels.