VW, T-Systems targets of football corruption probe: report

15th February 2011, Comments 0 comments

The German auto giant Volkswagen and telecommunications firm T-Systems are targets of a corruption probe that also involves the Wolfsburg football club, a press report said Tuesday.

An enquiry lead by prosecutors in Stuttgart, southern Germany, is focusing on former directors and collaborators of both companies suspected of having concluded "illegal agreements," the Sueddeutsche Zeitung newspaper said.

Managers at T-Systems, a unit of Deutsche Telekom unit allegedly tried to obtain contracts from VW worth several hundred million euros in exchange for an extension of the carmaker's sponsorship of VfL Wolfsburg, a club located in the northern German home of Europe's biggest carmaker.

VW is the main shareholder of the first-division German club that won the coveted Bundesliga crown in 2009.

Deutsche Telekom initiated the investigation itself, the newspaper said, after discovering irregularities at T-Systems, which provides business customers with telephone and Internet services.

According to the report, two former Deutsche Telekom directors are targets of the probe, along with a former T-Systems advisor and two others at VW's purchasing division.

Investigators have searched sites belonging to the companies and the club, it added.

© 2011 AFP

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