Marc Coucke about cheating in the sale of Anderlecht: “The damage suffered will of course have to be compensated”

Current owner Marc Coucke is grateful that the Brussels judiciary is prosecuting those who defrauded him at the time. Of course he is also angry with Van Holsbeeck, Henrotay and co. He is no longer really surprised, he says. “When I bought the club, corpses fell out of the closet very quickly.”

Peter Huyberechts

“You take over a club with such grandeur, for so much money, then you want everything to run normally. The fact that it now appears that this is not the case is difficult for me.” Marc Coucke reacts shocked but combatively to the news that the federal public prosecutor’s office wants to prosecute eleven people and three companies. All involved in the sale of the club to Coucke in 2017, according to the judicial investigation, the former board, flanked by law firms and some companies, was guilty of crimes such as fraud, forgery, money laundering, private corruption, breach of professional secrecy and abuse of trust. It is not yet clear when the suspects will (probably) be referred. Numerous parties have requested additional investigative acts at the last minute, a legal right.

READ ALSO. The public prosecutor’s office wants 14 suspects to go to court for cheating in the sale of Anderlecht

Probably civil party soon

Coucke says he is grateful that the investigation is being conducted so seriously. Chances are very likely that he will soon file a civil suit. “The damage suffered will of course have to be compensated.”

He states that he effectively feels ripped off, tricked by people of (then) good reputation with whom he negotiated for weeks. Although, according to the investigation, the fraud mainly took place in the aftermath of the sale/sale of the club.

His gut feeling at the time was right, he says. “I felt quite quickly that things were not right. That there were unsavory practices. Not long after I took office, it turned out that a lot of corpses fell out of the closet. There were so many things that weren’t right.”

(Read more below the photo)

Marc Coucke soon realized that many unsavory practices took place under the previous administration. — © ISOPIX

READ ALSO. The entire former top of Anderlecht threatens to come to court soon: what exactly is it about?

Nothing to do

He is ashamed of the whole situation. “We are now more than five years later and I still have to talk about this. That can’t be the intention in such a beautiful story. Nothing to doHowever, I remain combative and let my lawyers do their job.”

He doesn’t want to say who Coucke feels most cheated by. He refers to the presumption of innocence of the former board. The investigation already shows that the previous board devised a construction to still reimburse house broker Christophe Henrotay for services rendered. With Coucke who would unintentionally have to pay for that commission.

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