icone historique


My engagement was initiated with the reception of information about what was happening in the European Swimming League (LEN) and the decisions that came with it.

Various press articles such as the one published in Espresso (Italian copy available on request), on the Total Waterpolo site (link) or on Swimming World (link) have been published.

For the sake of transparency, Mr. Paolo BARELLI is alleged to have been guilty of “corruption”, abuse of corporate assets and forgery and use of forgery.

Mr Bartolo CONSOLO, Honorary President of LEN, has thus initiated various procedures :

  • Criminal before the Italian and Swiss courts
  • Before the FINA Ethics Committee

More globally, according to the press, a large network of relatives, friends and administrators of the federation revolves around Mr. Barelli as part of a global set of obscure financial exchanges, from Florida to Italy, and now in Switzerland with LEN, which allowed them to make a profit and characterizing many abuses of corporate goods.

In addition to matters specific to Italy, Paolo Barelli, the current LEN President, has been accused since early January of at least 3 cases on behalf of LEN. The two most important are :

  • Invoicing to LEN by company Cir AUR, 75% owned by President Barelli, between 20K and 25K per year which would correspond to reimbursements of expenses, outside any regulatory framework and ethics;
  • A retro-commission of 5 to 6% on the renewal of the TV rights contract (amount of 1.25M€ per year) to the company ELEVAN, which apparently have not participated in the renewal of these rights.

As a LEN Bureau member, I was able to have very partial information in April and May, but unfortunately without any presentation of documents or written justification. In view of the outings in the international press but especially the letter from Bartolo Consolo addressed to all federations explaining the opening of two investigations by the Swiss and Italian courts, I took the liberty of asking Paolo Barelli, in agreement with my restricted office of concrete elements, as the responsibility of the LEN Bureau member may be engaged.

letter nº1

If the letter did not please the recipient, who refused to provide any feedback, creating an aggravated feeling of suspicion, a large number of European Federations have contacted me. Through long and advanced discussions, it was noted that we could not offer the European federations the only option to vote at the upcoming election in November for the renewal of the same governance, possibly in difficulty with the justice system. This institution deserves something else. The deadline for application to the next LEN elections was set on August 10. Empowered by the request of the Member Federations and in full agreement with my Bureau held urgently in the last evening, it was decided that I apply as a LEN President.

If i was supported it is mainly due to French Swimming being an important country in European history and France still plays a fundamental role in the major decisions of our continent.

Today, even though I am convinced that our European institution must strengthen its role in the development of our aquatic activities, it is also required to reform its governance around a shared project. However, my candidacy is only intended to remain true to the values that drive us.

Therefore and of course, if Paolo Barelli is cleared of all suspicion, and as I wrote, I will withdraw my candidacy. In the meantime, I suggest to the Federation that wish to join us to work on an ambitious project around an honest, transparent and reformist alternative as I wrote in this letter.

letter nº 2

The purpose of this section is to retrace the history of this adventure and to provide all those who need it with all the elements in our possession, in complete transparency.


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