The German FA has said it will fight an order to pay millions of euros in back taxes. The case is related to the scandal surrounding Germany's successful bid to host the 2006 World Cup.
The German football association (DFB) said in a statement on Friday that it planned to fight an order by the tax authorities for it to pay €19.2 million ($22.4 million) in taxes dating back to 2006. The statement said the DFB would make the payment by a deadline set out by the tax office in Frankfurt, where its headquarters is located, before handing the case over to its lawyers.
The tax office has accused the DFB of deliberate deception and disputed its status as a charitable organization for the year 2006.
The DFB has conceded that the tax return it submitted for 2006 was incorrect. It had described the money a having been used to organize a World Cup gala, which never took place. However, the DFB maintains that the repayment of a 6.7-million euro loan to the late former Adidas chairman Robert Louis-Dreyfus was a business expense eligible to be offset against tax.
Two years ago, the newsmagazine Spiegel reported allegations that the loan of 10.3 million Swiss francs made by Louis-Dreyfus to the DFB in 2000, was used by the bidding committee to help secure enough FIFA Executive Committee votes to ensure that Germany won the right to host the 2006 World Cup.
In March 2016, Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer, the law firm that the DFB hired to look into any possible wrongdoing, published its report on the affair. It concluded that there was no absolute proof that votes were bought in the awarding of the 2006 World Cup.
pfd/ (SID, dpa)