On Wednesday, around 200 officials will search the DFB’s business premises and the private homes of DFB officials. The search is concerned with the suspicion of tax evasion of income from perimeter advertising for home international matches.
On Wednesday, the public prosecutor’s office in Frankfurt/Main searched the business premises of the German Soccer Association (DFB) and the private homes of DFB officials on suspicion of tax evasion in particularly serious cases. According to the Frankfurt public prosecutor’s office, a total of around 200 officials were involved in the measures in Hesse, Bavaria, North Rhine-Westphalia, Lower Saxony and Rhineland-Palatinate.
The investigations, which were conducted in particularly serious cases on suspicion of fraudulent evasion of corporate and trade tax for the benefit of third parties, are directed at six former or current DFB managers,” the public prosecutor’s office announced. “They are accused of having deliberately incorrectly declared income from perimeter advertising for home international matches of the national soccer team in 2014 and 2015 as income from asset management. The DFB thus escaped taxation of around 4.7 million euros.
The authorities did not name the suspects. The president of the largest sports association in the world at the time was Wolfgang Niersbach, who then resigned because of the still unresolved “summer fairy tale” scandal surrounding the 2006 World Cup. “According to the investigations to date, there is a suspicion that the accused knew about this tax incorrectness, but deliberately chose it in order to provide the DFB with a tax advantage of great magnitude,” explained senior public prosecutor Nadja
Sneeze in the press release.
The DFB and its long-standing marketing agency Infront recently ended their cooperation “amicably” after almost 40 years. The reason for this was the results of a study by the consulting firm Esecon. In this investigation, accusations had been made against Infront. Infront had rejected them and did not acknowledge the termination by the DFB. The agency had been commissioned to procure perimeter advertising partners for national team matches until 2018. According to Esecon’s investigation report, the company was awarded the contract for the business by the DFB in 2013, even though a competitor had bid up to 18 million euros more.