(Reuters) – Sampdoria president Massimo Ferrero is set to resign from his position after he was arrested on Monday following an investigation launched into alleged bankruptcy crimes involving the 70-year-old, the Serie A club said.

Sampdoria said Ferrero will step down out of “respect for the club”. The club also distanced themselves from any involvement in the alleged incidents.

“It was with great astonishment that we learned of the execution today of a pre-trial detention order against Massimo Ferrero,” the club said in a statement.

“It was a request from the Public Prosecutor’s Office of the Republic of Paola for bankruptcy related to events of many years ago. These events are entirely independent of both the management and ownership of the Sampdoria.

“However, to protect the interests of the other activities in which he (Ferrero) operates, and, specifically, to avoid any speculation regarding Sampdoria and the world of football, Ferrero intends to formalise an immediate resignation.”

Reuters could not immediately reach Ferrero’s lawyers for comment.

Italian news agency ANSA said Ferrero, a businessman and cinema producer, was arrested in Milan and has been taken to San Vittore jail.

ANSA added five other people probed in relation to the case have been put under house arrest over bankruptcy of four companies in the hotel, tourism and cinema sector based in the Calabrian province of Cosenza.

(Reporting by Peter Hall; Editing by Rohith Nair)

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