People under UK sanctions will be disqualified, as will those involved in violent crimes, corruption, fraud, tax evasion and hate crimes.
The Premier League has approved rules banning people found to have committed human rights abuses from owning or managing football clubs.
The changes were unanimously approved by England’s Top Flight Football Club at their shareholders’ meeting on Thursday and are effective immediately.
Human rights violations under the Global Human Rights Sanctions Regulations 2020 will be one of many additional ‘disqualification events’ under the enhanced Premier League owner and manager testing.
The new rules also mean that any person or company subject to UK government sanctions will be disqualified.
The range of disqualifying crimes has been expanded to include crimes including violence, corruption, fraud, tax evasion and hate crimes.
The Premier League also has the power to bar a person from becoming a director if he is under investigation for conduct that, if substantiated, would lead to ‘disqualification’.
The rules came into effect at a time when the Premier League club’s ownership was under renewed scrutiny amid Manchester United bidders lining up.
A consortium led by Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund has acquired Newcastle United in 2021 after ensuring that the Saudi government could not control the club in the northeast.
Amnesty International called the acquisition “a clear attempt by the Saudi authorities to sportwash their appalling human rights record with the allure of top-flight football”.
A member of the Qatari royal family, Jassim bin Hamad Al-Thani, is up against one of the groups trying to buy Manchester United from the Glazer family.
Qatar, host of the 2022 World Cup, faces criticism over its treatment of foreign workers. Qatar denied the charges and said it was working with UN agencies on labor issues.
Another measure adopted on Thursday would reduce the threshold for what constitutes control of a club from 30% to 25%.
The scope of the bankruptcy provisions has also been expanded, allowing the league to take action against those “involved in previous bankruptcies in a wider range of circumstances.”