Washington Commanders owner Dan Snyder is no stranger to controversy, but the investigation into sexual harassment and hostile workplace has now taken a turn. Evidence now points to the company manipulating its financial records in an attempt to prevent visiting groups from contributing to their revenue and withholding refundable deposits from fans.
Congress is now transferring resources to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC). A letter received by the Associated Press and shared by the Washington Post underscores the behavior of Snyder and the commanders, which Congress claims have “killed thousands of team fans for engaging in complex, long-term and illegal financial behavior.” National Football League (NFL). “
A key aspect of this recent investigation is that a former employee and general who appeared before Congress told lawmakers he had two financial books. One of those books contained actual statistics of the company, and the other, sent to the NFL, reported a reduction in ticket sales so the group could avoid revenue sharing.
In addition, Congress has known for more than a decade that it has implemented a plan designed to set aside refundable deposits for seat licenses, with no intention of having to repay deposits when fan licenses expire. The testimony of Jason Friedman, a longtime employee of the Commanders, described how far the team went to save fans from their own money.
“After Mr Snyder’s acquisition of the team in 1999, Friedman said, team managers advised employees to set up roadblocks to prevent customers from receiving the security deposit they owe, instead of returning the security deposit to customers at the end of the lease term. The team to retain that money.”
The plan, provided by Friedman, involves former licensees jumping on the bandwagon to claim a refund. In the event of a death or license expiration, the team did not knowingly inform the fans that there was a deposit in the account. If someone calls or emails the group for a refund, they are told that it will not work without a written request to the FedEx Field via USPS or FedEx. This weeded out a considerable number of refunds, many of which were not involved in the letter sending attempt.
The estimated total cost of the project is $ 5 million, affecting approximately 2,000 individuals. Friedman told Congress that Commanders executives used the word “juice” as a code word for undeclared funds for the NFL.
While claims that frozen security deposits would be converted into executive slush funds provoked several civil lawsuits against the commanders, the existential threat to Snyder’s rights centers failed to accurately report ticket sales in their games. On one occasion Friedman recalled taking money from Commanders Home Game and misappropriating revenue from FedEx Field, which runs a game between Notre Dame and the Navy. Stephen Choi.
“(Stephen – Can you all respond with the implementation guide? This is the total club sro [standing room only] I charge $ 55 per ticket, but the price of tickets is $ 44 on the system. A total of 14,760 game tickets are sold here, $ 11 = $ 162,360 for juice)
Mr. Choi replied, “The juice goes to the Navy vs. NT game,” Mr. Choi said. According to Friedman, a portion of Commanders ‘game tickets’ revenue – $ 162,360 – must be misappropriated as unsortable revenue from the Navy. Notre Dame College football against. “
This meant $ 160,000 was not reported to the NFL and was subject to the 40 per cent revenue category for visiting groups, with the generals pocketing the entire amount. Kenny Chesney did the same at the concert, which also took place at FedEx Field.
Although the amounts discussed in this letter are insignificant in terms of total NFL revenue, they clearly violate the owner’s agreement – and wanting NFLPA responses could open up a major headache for the league. Note that this is only speculation, but both the payroll limit and the current Bargaining Agreement (CPA) are based on NFL earnings. Therefore, withholding or under-reporting revenue by any team has a direct impact on reducing players ’earnings.
Its value is that commanders vehemently deny the evidence provided to the FTC. A spokesman for the group told the Associated Press:
“The Committee categorically rejects any suggestion of any financial misconduct at any time. We adhere to strict internal procedures that comply with industry and accounting standards, are audited annually by a world-renowned independent audit firm, and are subject to regular audits by the NFL.
The question remains: What will the NFL do now? Snyder has been a thorn in the side of the league for some time, but so far they have done everything to protect him – just like all their owners. However, if the League confirms the findings of Congress in their own investigation, it would be foolish to withhold funds from other owners.
In the winter of 2017, former Carolina Panthers owner Jerry Richardson was named in a Sports Illustrated report for sexually harassing at least one former employee. At the time Richardson knew the report was coming in, and on the same day he announced he wanted to sell the team – then in June 2018 a unanimous ownership vote was finalized for David Depper.
It is widely believed that if that situation had been dragged out and Richardson competed against the claims, the other 31 owners would have fired him. The NFL will now do the same with Snyder, ending the commanders’ franchise.
It is unknown at this time what he will do after leaving the post. The NFL has not released any statement regarding the letter to the FTC and is not expected to contribute anything meaningful except to indicate that they are continuing the investigation. Much of the play will be played behind the scenes, but reading The Tea Leaves may actually spell Snyder’s time as Commander-in-Chief.