Lionel Messi has chosen to pay a total of £221,000 in order to avoid going to prison in Spain.
The Barcelona star has faced prosecutors alongside his father Jorge Messi since 2016. They were arraigned for hiding part of the footballer’s earnings from image rights.
Although the 30-year-old football icon was found guilty and sentenced, media reports confirm he has offered to pay a higher fine which guarantees freedom for him and Jorge.
Messi’s 21-month prison term was replaced with a €252,000 fine.
His father whose sentence was later reduced to 15 months, also had his jail term replaced with an approximated €180,000.
With the payments, there’s a big chance that their tax fraud which was valued at £3.59 million will be closed.
Both father and son allegedly used offshore companies/accounts in Belize, the United Kingdom, Switzerland and Uruguay, for the scam which they perpetrated between 2007 and 2009.
Image shows Lionel Messi and his childhood love Antonella Roccuzzo.
The famous no. 10 has endorsements deals with the Kuwait Food Company, Pepsi-Cola, Adidas, Procter & Gamble and the Kuwait Food Company.
Spanish law states that first-term offenders are given suspended sentences, implying that prison terms could be served under probation — especially if the sentence is not above 2 years.
Messi’s appeal was denied in May despite efforts from his team of lawyers.
The Argentina international footballer proposed last month, in mutual agreement with their prosecutors, to pay a total of €400 per day for the duration of his 21-month jail term. Interestingly, the offer has been reviewed and accepted.
Image shows Lionel Messi and his father Jorge Messi.
Messi recently signed a 3-year contract with Barcelona. He’s tied to La Blagranas until 2012 when he will be 34.
The court ruling comes as part of another wonderful week for the Barcelona star who recently said “I do” to his childhood love Antonella Roccuzzo.
“Messi is the only player that runs faster with the ball than he does without it,” Manchester City coach Pep Guardiola said of the 5-term Ballon d’Or winner.
Now he has lots of reasons to stand and fight like a real man.