Earlier today, we carried a report from Cadena Ser, which explained the local police have raided Barcelona’s offices to conduct ‘series of searches’ as a part of the investigation into ‘Barçagate’.
It was also stated the possibility of the Mossos d’Esquadra [police force of Catalonia] making arrests wasn’t ruled out as ‘alleged crimes of unfair administration and corruption between individuals are investigated’.
Another report from Cadena Ser now claim the club’s former president, Josep Maria Bartomeu, has been arrested as a ‘part of the operation’ carried out the Catalonia police force.
The report even adds former Barcelona CEO Óscar Grau and Román Gómez Pontí, the head of legal services, have also been arrested, along with Bartomeu.
Last February, Cadena Ser first reported Bartomeu appointed as a firm, called I3 Ventures, and the objective was the agency to build positive image online of Bartomeu, his then board and the club.
🔴 Junto a Bartomeu han sido detenidos Óscar Grau, que fue director general del club, y Román Gómez Pontí, responsable de los servicios jurídicoshttps://t.co/mQPghwSGzy
— El Larguero (@ellarguero) March 1, 2021
The agency was also tasked to damage image of some of the club’s current players like Lionel Messi and Gerard Piqué, former players, legends and even their presidential candidates, Joan Laporta and Víctor Font.
According to Cadena Ser, the contract was done, ‘bypassing all internal legal and financial controls’.
The ‘Barçagate’ scandal saw several of the club’s officials resign from their post, but Bartomeu didn’t tender his resignation immediately.
He stepped down from his post as the club’s chief last October.
It’s stated the focus of this investigation has been on the offices ‘of the finance, legal and compliance departments’.