Italian law enforcers probe €740m sale of AC Milan to Li Yonghong

March 22 – Italian prosecutors have opened an investigation into last year’s sale of AC Milan by Silvio Berlusconi’s holding company to a Chinese consortium, according to Reuters quoting a judicial source.

Prosecutors have opened a preliminary investigation without citing any specific crime or suspect, the source said.

The former Italian prime minister sold the club in April 2017 for €740 million and stepped down from his role as president which he had held from more than 30 years.

The seven-time European champions are 99% owned by a Luxembourg-based vehicle, Rossoneri Sport Investment Lux, which is controlled by Chinese entrepreneur Li Yonghong.

He completed the deal only after a protracted negotiation with Berlusconi’s holding company as he struggled to raise the funds to complete the acquisition. Reports have apparently been submitted by Italy’s finance police over potentially suspicious activities relating to the sale.

In December, UEFA rejected a request to waive Financial Fair Play (FFP) rules for AC Milan, saying they remained unconvinced about the club’s new Chinese backers.

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