World Cup hospitality packages blocked amid scalping probe
Rio De Janeiro: Three companies have had their World Cup corporate hospitality packages blocked and another firm has had theirs cancelled as Brazilian police investigate VIP ticket scalping.
Match Hospitality, a Swiss agency which holds exclusive rights to the World Cup hospitality programme, said it cancelled all packages purchased by Atlanta Sportif after their CEO, Lamine Fofana, was among 11 people arrested last week on suspicion of leading a scalping ring.
Packages held by Reliance Industries Ltd, Jet Set Sports and Pamodzi were blocked after tickets with their names were found in Fofana`s possession, Match Hospitality said.
"(They) are to cooperate with Match Hospitality by helping the authorities with their enquiries regarding the hospitality packages with their names on them found in Mr. Fofana’s possession," said Match.
"Failing that, Match Hospitality will cancel their tickets for the semi-final and the final."
Match added that its terms expressly prohibited the re-sale of tickets.
"Match Hospitality will continue to investigate and cooperate with all tickets seized by police, tracing their path to any illegal resale, and remains committed to preventing the illegal resale of 2014 FIFA World Cup tickets," it said.
Rio de Janeiro police said last week that Fofana, a French-Algerian national, had free access to restricted FIFA areas and received up one million reais (USD 450,000) per game by re-selling tickets.
The suspects face charges of money-laundering, illegal ticket touting and conspiracy.