Spain’s Supreme Court on Wednesday confirmed a 21-month jail sentence and $2.25-million fine on Barcelona star Lionel Messi for tax fraud, months after the Barcelona football star lodged an appeal.
The Argentinian and his father Jorge Horacio Messi, in July 2016, were found guilty of using companies in Belize, Britain, Switzerland and Uruguay to avoid paying taxes that amounted to €4.16 million of the footballer’s income earned from his image rights between 2007-’09.
Both Messi and his father were given a 21-month jail sentence but reports state that it is likely to be suspended. During his trial last year, the four time Ballon d’Or winner had argued that he trusted his father with his finances and “knew nothing” about how they were managed.
The income connected with Messi’s image rights that was hidden reportedly includes endorsement deals with Danone, Adidas, Pepsi-Cola, Procter & Gamble and the Kuwait Food Company.