Carlos Ibáñez, the chief of the company responsible for defaming FC Barcelona players allegedly under the direction of disgraced former president Josep Maria Bartomeu, has spoken in front of a judge regarding the Barçagate case.
Ibáñez is the head of I3 Ventures, the company responsible for creating social media attacks against perceived enemies of Bartomeu’s, sometimes including current and former FC Barcelona players.
That company was hired and directed to attack club legends such as Xavi and Pep Guardiola, and current players such as Lionel Messi and Gerard Piqué, among others, by FC Barcelona itself as Ibáñez has confirmed.
I3 Ventures at first denied creating the pages which launched those attacks on social media, but Barcelona dissolved their contract with the company when the allegations first surfaced.
Bartomeu admitted to hiring I3 Ventures, but maintained that it was merely to monitor social media posts, and not to launch attacks on his rivals.
Catalan police seized documents from club offices and arrested Bartomeu, his adviser Jaume Masferrer, club Barcelona CEO Oscar Grau and head of legal services Roman Gomez Bonti in connection with the investigation.
What’s more, Ibáñez has testified that he continued to work for Barcelona even after his firing.
The case against Bartomeu grows as the investigation proceeds, with allegations that he was engaging in accounting fraud to avoid suspicion regarding Barçagate.