Exec Says Fox Sports, Televisa Paid Bribes At FIFA Trial

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Burzaco's testimony came at the NY trial of three former South American soccer officials, who are among the people who allegedly accepted the bribes.

Fox allegedly signed a pact with an Argentine media company to facilitate bribes to officials in FIFA's South American confederation in connection with TV rights.

The testimony came during the first trial to emerge from the US investigation of bribery surrounding Federation Internationale de Football Association, soccer's world governing body.

The three men are now standing trial in Brooklyn federal court on charges of wire fraud, racketeering, and money laundering.

The court heard how Burzaco had paid regular bribes, often six-figure sums, primarily to six senior officials of the South American football governing body, Conmebol, in exchange for the broadcast rights to the Copa Libertadores, South America's premier worldwide club competition.

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Burzaco told the court the bribes came in the form of phony contracts, including one from 2008 that involved the Fox Sports/Torneos partnership paying $3.7 million to the recipients. Torneos and Fox Sports, a unit of Twenty-First Century Fox Inc, jointly owned a sports marketing venture, T&T Sports Marketing Ltd, according to Burzaco. The money was in addition to annual bribes, between $300,000 to $1.3m, that the six senior Conmebol officials were already receiving from T&T for the rights to tournament.

Burzaco gave the testimony during the first trial.

Alejandro Burzaco, former head of sports marketing company Torneos y Competencias, named the companies while being questioned by a prosecutor in Brooklyn federal court.

Burzaco also testified Tuesday that he had personally bribed Burga, Marin, and Napout for a three- or five-year period, beginning in 2010.

A spokesperson from FOX Sports did not immediately respond to a request for comment.