A Spanish court has sentenced Lionel Messi to 21 months in prison for tax fraud. This was reported by The Independent:.
However, it is assumed that the Argentine footballer will not end up in jail, as according to Spanish law, in case of up to 2 years in prison, the punishment can be served in another way.
Messi, 29, one of the highest paid athletes in the world, was accused of setting up a chain of fake companies in Belize և Uruguay to evade € 4.16 million in tax evasion from advertising contracts between 2007 and 2009. However, Messi said that he was busy playing football and entrusted the financial issues to his father and lawyers. The same verdict was handed down against his father, Jorge Horacio Messi. The couple, who have also been fined heavily, can appeal the decision to the Supreme Court.
During the trial, Messi stated that he never suspected anything illegal when his father asked him to sign advertising contracts, various documents. Messi’s tax manager Eva Blasquez also said that Leon did not see the final version of the contract, which was completely under the control of his father.
Prepared by Susanna Khachatryan