The Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) has issued its decision in the appeal arbitration procedure between the French Ligue 1 side Paris Saint-Germain and UEFA. The appeal filed at the CAS on October 3, 2018 by Paris Saint-Germain against the decision issued on September 19, 2018 by the Adjudicatory Chamber of the UEFA Club Financial Control Body (CFCB) (the Challenged Decision) is upheld and the Challenged decision is set aside.
The decision issued on June 13, 2018 by the Investigatory Chamber of the UEFA CFCB in which the investigation into Paris Saint-Germain’s compliance with the UEFA Financial Fair Play regulations was closed is thus final and binding.
On June 22, 2018, the Chairman of the UEFA CFCB, on the basis of Article 16 (1) of the UEFA CFCB Procedural Rules (the Applicable Rules), ordered that the Adjudicatory Chamber review the decision taken by the Investigatory Chamber on June 13, 2018. The Adjudicatory Chamber ruled on September 19, 2018 that the case should be referred back to the Investigatory Chamber for further investigation. On October 3, 2018, Paris Saint-Germain filed an appeal at the CAS seeking to have such decision annulled on the basis that Article 16 (1) provided for a 10-day review period during which any review should be instigated and completed and that the Challenged Decision was manifestly late.
The CAS Panel in charge of the matter issued its decision on the basis of the parties’ written submissions. The CAS Panel concurred that the 10-day time limit which starts to run from the date of communication of the decision of the Chief Investigator to the CFCB Chairman, as set out in Article 16 (1) of the Applicable Rules, did indeed mean that the review conducted by the Adjudicatory Chamber should have taken place within ten days and that since the Challenged Decision was issued beyond the 10-day time limit, the Challenged Decision was untimely and must be annulled.