Marseille president, 3 others arrested for alleged improper payments

Tuesday November 18th, 2014

Four current and former members of French Ligue 1 team Olympique de Marseille's front office have been arrested for alleged improper payments, the Associated Press' Samuel Petrequin reports.

Team president Vincent Labrune, director general Philippe Perez and former presidents Jean-Claude Dassier and Pape Diouf have all been arrested. The investigation centers on Marseille's 2010 acquisition of Andre-Pierre Gignac for $20 million from Toulouse and whether the front office accepted money as part of the deal.

Police interviewed Dassier, who was president when the club acquired Gignac, and Labrune, who ran the team's finances, about the team's process for acquiring players.

The club's main shareholder Margarita Louis-Dreyfus expressed her confidence in "the club's current management and French judicial system."

Marseille is first place in Ligue 1 so far this season with 28 points in 13 matches. The club plays Bordeaux on Nov. 23.

- Paul Palladino

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