Football

Published: Saturday December 14, 2013 MYT 4:12:02 AM
Updated: Saturday December 14, 2013 MYT 4:12:14 AM

Belounis sues Qatar club for alleged "fraud and extortion"

French football player Zahir Belounis attends a news conference in Paris December 3, 2013. REUTERS/Charles Platiau

French football player Zahir Belounis attends a news conference in Paris December 3, 2013. REUTERS/Charles Platiau

PARIS (Reuters) - The French footballer who said he was left stranded for 17 months in Qatar because of a financial dispute with his club has filed a lawsuit against the side, his lawyer said on Friday.

The complaint on behalf of Zahir Belounis, of which Reuters obtained a copy, alleges "fraud, inhuman working conditions, forgery and aggravated extortion of money" against Al-Jaish.

Belounis, 33, who joined the Qatari club in 2007 and signed a new five-year deal in 2010, alleged he had been denied an exit visa after bringing a court case against Al-Jaish over two-and-a-half years of alleged unpaid wages.

The player said he was being prevented from leaving Qatar because his employer would not grant an exit visa - which is required in Qatar - unless he dropped the case.

He eventually left the country last month after agreeing to sign a backdated resignation letter stipulating that he will not be paid for the two remaining years of his contract, estimated to be around 120,000 Euros ($164,800).

The Belounis case was taken up by the international players union FIFPro who said it hoped publicity would help to change the sponsorship system that linked a working permit to a single employer, a system criticised by human rights groups and the United Nations.

His plight is another controversy dogging 2022 World Cup hosts Qatar following an outcry over the treatment of migrant workers in the Gulf state's construction industry.

The club could not be reached for comment. ($1 = 0.7283 euros)

(Reporting by Gregory Blachier; Writing by Julien Pretot; Editing by Tony Goodson)

advertisement

  1. Liverpool seek to land knockout blow on Chelsea
  2. Malaysian girls on fire in first day of ABC meet
  3. Doubles to the rescue, singles hopeless in ABC meet
  4. One final push for Elvinn to represent country
  5. The boys will get to play at world juniors
  6. Chelsea may field weakened team v Liverpool - Mourinho
  7. JDT complete new signing from Lanus
  8. JDT axe under-par Argentine Aimar
  9. Super Dan looking good for another wildcard
  10. German woman falls to her death from Mt Kinabalu summit

advertisement

advertisement