News 24 May 2017
Author: Marisa Lee

Messi is going to jail for tax fraud

Author Marisa Lee
24 May 2017

On Wednesday, Spain’s supreme court confirmed that they had sentenced Lionel Messi to 21 months in jail for tax fraud, as well as a hefty €2.2 million fine.

The footballer was convicted alongside his father Jorge in 2016, who between them had defrauded Spain of €4.1m (£3.5m) in taxes. While Messi’s sentence will most likely be suspended fitting with Spain’s rules for non-violent crimes carrying a sentence of under two years, his father’s was reduced because he paid some of the taxes.

Messi’s defence back in 2016 was, “I only worried about playing football.”

Both men were convicted of three counts of fraud, for using tax havens in Belize and Uruguay between 2007 and 2009, and were also given weighty fines.

They were found guilty of creating fake companies to evade paying Spanish taxes on income from companies paying for the use of Messi’s image rights.