Fox Sports accused of bribing soccer officials for broadcast rights

Other broadcasters accused of paying bribes for soccer rights include Traffic, TV Globo and Full Play Argentina. (Fox Sports)

Fox Sports has been accused by the former CEO of a South American marketing firm of bribing soccer officials in return for securing broadcast rights for events.

During a trial that’s part of a wide-ranging FIFA corruption investigation, Alejandro Burzaco said Fox Sports and other broadcasters submitted bribes to get the rights to Copa America and other events. Specifically, prosecutors showed a 2008 agreement, signed by Fox Sports officials, for a $3.7 million payment sent to an off-shore account, reportedly a holding company for the bribes, in Turks and Caicos.

Fox Sports denied bribing any officials.

FREE DAILY NEWSLETTER

Like this story? Subscribe to FierceVideo!

The Video industry is an ever-changing world where big ideas come along daily. Cable, Media and Entertainment, Telco, and Tech companies rely on FierceVideo for the latest news, trends, and analysis on video creation and distribution, OTT delivery technologies, content licensing, and advertising strategies. Sign up today to get news and updates delivered to your inbox and read on the go.

“Any suggestion that Fox Sports knew of or approved of any bribes is emphatically false,” the company said in a statement obtained by the AP. “Fox Sports had no operational control of the entity which Burzaco ran.”

Other broadcasters accused of paying bribes for soccer rights include Traffic, TV Globo and Full Play Argentina.

RELATED: Fox's $200M bid for World Cup sours as U.S. fails to qualify

While Fox Sports is fending off accusations of bribery for soccer rights, it is also potentially facing setbacks after spending millions for 2018 World Cup rights only to have the U.S. Men’s National Team fail to qualify.

In 2011, Fox and Telemundo won the U.S. rights for the 2018 and 2022 men’s World Cups for a combined $1 billion. That total was more than double the $425 million that ESPN and Univision paid together for the U.S. rights to the 2010 and 2014 men’s World Cups—and of that total, ESPN paid $100 million.

For their deal, Fox paid $400 million and Telemundo paid $600 million. That agreement also included U.S. broadcast rights to the 2015 and 2019 women’s World Cups as well as other soccer tournaments.

Read more on

Suggested Articles

As more subscription streaming video services enter the market, the potential total cost for consumers keeps going up.

Amazon’s new Fire TV Blaster is built to work in tandem with other Amazon devices to expand Alexa voice controls within the home.

beIN Sports is launching a free, ad-supported network on the Roku Channel, where it will feature live sports including soccer along with originals.