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Top football agent guilty of mismanagement

Published on 10/09/2008

10 September 2008

GENEVA — Former French football agent Marc Roger was found guilty Tuesday of mismanagement and falsifying records while he was president of Swiss club FC Servette.

But a Geneva court found Roger innocent of the more serious charges of fraud and financial misconduct in connection with the club’s bankruptcy in 2005.

Roger, who was an agent for football stars Nicolas Anelka, Claude Makelele and Patrick Vieira, denied all the charges against him.

The 45-year-old Frenchman was arrested in 2005 shortly after Servette collapsed with more than CHF 12 million in debts, less than a year after he took over the club.

Roger skipped bail and went to France, which does not hand over its own citizens. But he was arrested in Spain last year and extradited to Switzerland.

Before taking over 17-time Swiss champion Servette, Roger was involved in current Chelsea striker Anelka’s lucrative move from Arsenal to Real Madrid in 1999, and Makelele’s transfer from Madrid to Chelsea in 2003.

Servette’s former co-president Olivier Maus was found guilty of mismanagement.

The court is expected to hand down sentences Wednesday.

[AP / Expatica]