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Tax Fraud: Messi’s Jail Term Substituted With Fine

BALTIMORE, MD (AFRICAN EXAMINER) – Four time world footballer of the year Lionel Messi could swap a 21-month prison sentence for tax fraud by paying a fine.

According to Spanish media, state prosecutor can exchange the Argentine jail time for a fine of €255,000 ($285,000; £224,000), which equates to €400 for each day behind bars.

However, it was reported that the final decision rests in the hands of the Spanish courts.

It would be recalled that Messi, along with his father Jorge, was found guilty of defrauding Spain of €4.1m between 2007 and 2009.

The court in Barcelona held that they used tax havens in Belize and Uruguay.

As well as the jail terms,

The Barcelona star and Argentina international was fined about €2m while his father was slammed with €1.5m.

They made a voluntary €5m “corrective payment”, equal to the alleged unpaid tax plus interest, in August 2013.

In May, Messi’s appeal against the sentence was rejected by the Supreme Court, but his father’s jail time was reduced because he paid some of the taxes.

According to Spanish Law, Messi was never expected to serve time in jail, as under the prison terms of under two years can be served under probation.

 

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