Police investigations raise questions over Al-Thani family's wages and shares

Nayef, Rakan and Nasser Al-Thani at La Rosaleda.
Nayef, Rakan and Nasser Al-Thani at La Rosaleda. / Ñito Salas
  • Initial reports presented to the judge investigating Malaga's finances have highlighted potential irregularities

Further questions into the financial activities of the Al-Thani family have been raised this week as police investigations into the Malaga CF accounts continue.

A provisional report requested by the judge overseeing the case brought forward by the club's Association of Minority Shareholders (APA) has been presented, showing the findings of the searches carried out at the club's offices at La Rosaleda at the end of January.

The first series of findings regard details of the family's personal takings in terms of wages and other earnings. It has been found that club owner and president Sheikh Abdullah Al-Thani and his three sons (Nasser, Rakan and Nayef) have been earning 1,444,736.88 euros between them for being on the club's board of directors. However, the conditions of these payments, outlined in the club statutes, say that these payments would only be made in instalments for meetings attended and that "these meetings must be documented and legally formalised".

During the search of the club, no such documentation was found, therefore appearing to support one of the principal arguments put forward by the APA in their case.

The police have also found that this quantity is equal to eight per cent of the club's budget for this year.

The family's earnings aren't only confined to this arrangement, however. A fifth member of the family, Hamyan, also earns an annual salary of 80,000 euros.

Sources at the club say that these payments came initially as a way for the Al-Thanis to repay loans that they had taken from the club. However, in recent years, they have been considering it as a direct salary; as a result, some of this 1.44 million per year is also included as loans.

Shares bought with club funds

The second series of findings has shone light on shares bought by Sheikh Al-Thani between 2015 and 2018.

During this period, as it became a possibility that control of the club could fall into the hands of the BlueBay group through that particular lawsuit, Al-Thani acquired a further 0.9 per cent of the club to ensure that he would maintain overall control.

The majority of these shares were purchased from former club president Fernando Puche and his family members. However, the police have discovered that the money used to buy these was first taken from the club's coffers and loaned to NAS Football, the company owned by Al-Thani and which has the controlling share of the club.

The share purchases tracked by the police (all but nine) were bought at public auction by club employees for 115,663.98 euros.