• Spain's news in English

Barça indicted in Neymar signing scandal

AFP · 20 Feb 2014, 16:06

Published: 20 Feb 2014 16:06 GMT+01:00

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

Prosecutors accuse Barcelona, who have a narrow lead at the top of the Spanish football league, of irregularities in the €86 million ($118 million) deal — which the club denies.

Judge Pablo Ruz at Madrid's National Court "indicts FC Barcelona for a crime against the public treasury in relation to the signing of the Brazilian player," said the source, citing a court ruling.

The judge ordered tax authorities to hand over the club's tax returns for 2011 to 2013, according to the ruling.

He sought to establish whether or not Neymar, who joined Barcelona in May 2013, was counted as a taxpayer in Spain or his native Brazil that year.

The judge also asked tax authorities to provide information about the taxing of deals linked to Neymar's signing and about how much may have been "defrauded".

He ordered Neymar's father to hand over contracts and documents from various companies linked to the signing.

The judge saw "sufficient evidence to investigate a possible crime against the public treasury by Barcelona football club", according to the ruling.

State prosecutors have alleged that Barcelona owe the taxman a total of €9.1 million ($12.5 million) in deals to bring the player to the Spanish champions from Brazilian club Santos.

Prosecutors said on Wednesday that there were "a suspicious number of simulated contracts".

Barcelona insisted that they have not broken the law at any point during the deal and signalled their intent to clear the club's name.

"The club's dealings with respect to this operation, and in light of all information available, were at all times in line with the relevant legal legislation," they said in a statement.

The club's former president Sandro Rosell resigned last month over the judicial wrangle sparked by Neymar's signing, which the club said cost €57.1 million.

The case was started by one of Barça's own members, Jordi Cases.

He accused Rosell of misappropriation for not declaring publicly that 40 million of the 57.1 million figure quoted by Barça was paid to N&N, a company controlled by the player's parents.

Following Rosell's resignation, the club revealed that the entire cost of the operation including Neymar's signing bonus, commissions, marketing deals, a donation to the player's foundation and other agreements totalled €86.2 million.

State prosecutors in Brazil have also called on its tax authorities to investigate potential tax fraud.

Earlier this month in an uncharacteristic blast, Neymar himself reacted angrily to the controversy.

Story continues below…

"I've been quiet until now! But I can't go on listening to all these things about my transfer," he wrote on the social media network Instagram.

"A lot of people come out and talk a load of rubbish -- calling our character into doubt," he wrote.

"I also understood we have masses of false friends."

On the field the 22-year-old's first season in Spain has been disrupted by injuries.

However, he has managed 12 goals in 28 appearances to date and was involved as a substitute as Barça beat Manchester City 2-0 in the first leg of their Champions League last 16 tie on Tuesday.

Barcelona are just ahead of their fierce rivals Real Madrid in the Spanish league on goal difference but tied on points with Real and Atletico Madrid.

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

Your comments about this article

Today's headlines
Spain worries about tourism future
Photo: Josep Lago / AFP file picture

After basking in its best tourist summer season in 15 years, Spain now sees dark clouds on the horizon as popular destinations reach saturation point and holidaymakers are more thrifty, industry experts say.

Spain’s Socialists lift veto on conservatives
The Socialists have decided to lift their veto on the minority conservative government or not. Photo: Gerard Julien/ AFP

Spain's embattled Socialists on Sunday voted to lift a long-standing veto that has prevented the conservatives from forming a minority government, in what should finally end a ten-month political impasse.

Spain's 'Napflix' aims to bore viewers to sleep
Photo: Screengrab/ Napflix

A Spanish video platform called Napflix, designed to put people to sleep with dull content, was launched this week and its founders are on the lookout for more "monotony and repetition."

Recipe: How to make fabada - traditional Asturian bean stew
Photo: Flavio Lorenzo Sánchez/Flickr

The hearty Asturian dish is a perfect lunch on a cold day... and don't forget the crusty bread and cider!

Brit 'paedo' held on Costa del Sol after Most Wanted appeal

One of Britain's most wanted fugitives was arrested on the Costa Del Sol following a tip-off from an expat just hours after his face appeared on a public appeal.

Spain's parliament approves deficit reduction measures
Photo: Images Money/Flickr

Spanish lawmakers approved on Thursday measures to reduce the public deficit and keep it under the target agreed with the European Union.

'Cubism and War' show opens at Barcelona Picasso Museum
Pablo Picasso Harlequin and Woman with a Necklace. Photo: MP

Barcelona's Picasso Museum unveiled an exhibition on "Cubism and War" on Thursday depicting how one of the most influential artistic styles of the 20th century survived the First World War.

Why this bionic limb pioneer doesn't believe in disability
Hugh Herr has been award Spain's top science prize. Photo: FPA

The Local speaks to Hugh Herr on winning Spain's top science prize and how being an amputee doesn't make him disabled.

Dine in the buff at Spain's first nudist restaurant
A buffet of organic food will be served on "human tables". Photo: Innato / Facebook

Spain's first naked dining experience is to arrive on the island of Tenerife following the success of a similar venture in London.

Spain's top court overturns bullfighting ban in Catalonia
Photo: AFP

Spain's Constitutional Court on Thursday cancelled a bullfighting ban in Catalonia in what is likely to exacerbate tensions between Madrid and the separatist region, and between animal activists and fans of the tradition.

Sponsored Article
How to vote absentee from abroad in the US elections
Madrid parish church faces fine over 'too noisy' bells
Sponsored Article
Last chance to vote absentee in the US elections
Celebrate expat life at Madrid’s THRIVE convention
Fury after kids told to bring their own loo roll to school
Sponsored Article
How to vote absentee from abroad in the US elections
Disney announces plans for Don Quixote action movie
Activist tells 8-yr-old matador wannabe with cancer 'just die'
King to make last minute push to avoid third vote in Spain
Amazing photos of Catalonia's 'human tower' contest
What's on in Spain: October 2016
'No way, Jose! You'll never get your hands on our Rock'
Recipe: How to make a classic Spanish tortilla de patatas
Chorizo in paella? Go back to cooking school Jamie Oliver
Spain in eye of a perfect storm after 10 months without govt
Thousands share clips of life for 'Spain in a Day' film
Ten incredible Spain locations for Game of Thrones season 7
Analysis & Opinion
Why moving to Spain could be the best decision of your life
Seven reasons why autumn is the very best season in Spain
Spanish study finds four types of personality. Which are you?
New search underway for civil war grave of poet Lorca
Bison found decapitated on Valencia nature reserve
Forgotten Voices: What Brits in Spain think about Brexit
One dead and 14 injured in blast at Spanish resort
Game of Thrones want extras 'with muscles' to film in Spain
Thousands march in Madrid to push for bullfighting ban
jobs available