Published: Fri, June 16, 2017
Sport | By Wendy Sparks

Real Madrid star Cristiano Ronaldo accused of tax fraud

The prosecution said Ronaldo had taken advantage of a corporate structure created in 2010 that served to hide the iconic player's income derived from his image rights.

"The Public Prosecutor has filed today a complaint against Cristiano Ronaldo and not a claim, which implies a substantial change", the statement on the company's official website read.

Real Madrid have declined to comment the report, whereas Cristiano Ronaldo said this is an "injustice".

Lionel Messi's successful tax evasion conviction helped to pave the way for prosecutors to launch a case against the Real Madrid forward.

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Cristiano Ronaldo has denied through his representatives he has ever committed tax fraud in Spain, after a lawsuit was filed against the Real Madrid and Portugal star.

The 32-year-old Portugal forward, who is the world's highest paid athlete according to Forbes magazine, is accused of evading tax via two companies based in the British Virgin Islands and Ireland.

The footballer has been charged with defrauding the Spanish tax office.

In addition, he listed his image rights income as totaling $12.8 million, when in reality, his real income was $48 million.

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"There is no off shore structure for evading taxes", Gestifute said in a statement. "All contractual modifications. have been made to guarantee that the incomes [Ronaldo derives] fully observe Spanish tax regulations", GestiFute said in a statement.

In December, leaked documents suggested that Ronaldo had avoided tax on income allegedly held in offshore accounts - allegations he also denied.

According to Spanish prosecutors, Ronaldo sought to hide at least a part of that wealth from the country's tax authorities.

Ronaldo could face up to 15-months in prison if found guilty.

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Madrid have now also offered their support to the four-time Ballon d'Or victor, believing him to be innocent of any wrongdoing.

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