Prosecutors consider charges over alleged football bribery

Callum Adams
Tommy Wright, Barnsley Football Club’s assistant manager is thought to have been the focus of the inquiry - PA

Prosecutors are considering whether to charge anyone over alleged bribery, after receiving evidence from detectives following a year-long criminal inquiry into football corruption.

The announcement by the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) follows an investigation by The Daily Telegraph in September of last year which revealed greed and corruption at the heart of English football.

A spokesperson from the City of London police said that they are awaiting charging decisions. 

The police inquiry is thought to have focused on Tommy Wright, Barnsley Football Club’s assistant manager.

He was sacked after allegedly accepting a £5,000 cash 'bribe' in a meeting with undercover reporters posing as representatives of the fictitious Far East company.

Wright has denied any wrongdoing. Detectives from the City of London Economic Crime Directorate launched a criminal investigation in November of last year into a “single suspected offence of bribery”, after concluding their review of material gathered by this newspaper.

However, it is understood that the inquiry expanded to cover two agents, believed to be Pino Pagliara and Dax Price. 

Former England manager Sam Allardyce lost his job after he was secretly filmed agreeing to be paid by a fake company to travel to the Far East for speaking engagements.

Police wrote to Allardyce shortly afterwards informing him that he was no longer part of their investigation.

The Telegraph did not suggest Allardyce had broken the law and he denied any wrongdoing.

He said at the time: “I was always confident that this would be the case as there was no evidence against me. I now ask that the Football Association deals with this matter as quickly as possible.”

The Football Association, English Football’s governing body, may launch its own investigation into wrongdoing but cannot do so until police are able to pass over the relevant files. 

A spokesperson for the CPS said: "We can confirm the CPS received a full file of evidence in October 2017 and this is currently being considered by specialist lawyers who will make a charging decision in due course."

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