The owner of Steaua Bucharest has been arrested on charges of kidnapping three men who allegedly stole his car earlier this year.
Gigi Becali, 50, was arrested following a five-hour court session through the night, after prosecutors argued he was a “a public danger.” Four others, who are all Becali’s bodyguards, were also arrested in the case. Becali will be detained for 29 days while the case is investigated.
Bucharest police said Becali and six employees attacked the three men in January, surrounding their vehicle and threatening them with guns before bundling them into the trunk of a car. The three men were then allegedly driven to a village outside Bucharest and left there, police said.
Becali claims he is being framed, arguing that the men had stolen his Mercedes and were trying to extort money for its return. He said they had also asked for hush money in exchange for not telling police about the alleged kidnapping.
Becali’s lawyer Gheorghe Mateut on Friday called his client’s arrest “an abuse.”
Steaua were punished in June after a match-fixing investigation alleged Becali offered £1.55 million to a rival team to lose the last match of the Romanian league and help Steaua win the title.