Editions:  Austria · Denmark · France · Germany · Italy · Norway · Spain · Sweden · Switzerland

Real Madrid have 'full confidence' in Ronaldo over tax

Share this article

Real Madrid have 'full confidence' in Ronaldo over tax
Photo: AFP
13:47 CEST+02:00
Real Madrid backed star forward Cristiano Ronaldo on Wednesday after Spanish prosecutors accused the star player of evading €14.7 million euros in tax through offshore companies.

"Real Madrid C.F. have full confidence in our player Cristiano Ronaldo, who we understand has acted in accordance with the legality regarding the fulfilment of his fiscal obligations," Real said in a statement.

"Since his arrival at Real Madrid C.F. in July 2009, Cristiano Ronaldo has always shown a clear will to fulfil all his tax obligations.   

"Real Madrid C.F. are absolutely convinced that our player, Cristiano Ronaldo, will prove his total innocence in this process. Real Madrid C.F. hope that justice is done as quickly as possible so that his innocence can be proven as soon as possible."

READ MORE: Cristiano Ronaldo accused of €14.7 million tax evasion

The 32-year-old Ronaldo -- the world's highest paid athlete according to Forbes magazine -- follows in the footsteps of Barcelona forward and Argentina star Lionel Messi, who was found guilty of the same offence last year, although the sums involved were allegedly smaller.

If he too is put on trial and found guilty, he risks "a fine of at least €28 million" ($31.3 million) and could potentially be jailed for three-and-a-half years, according to the Gestha union of experts at Spain's
Inland Revenue.    

Ronaldo is accused of "four crimes against the public treasury between 2011-14... which involves tax fraud of €14,768,897", Madrid's public prosecutor's office said on Tuesday.

"The accused took advantage of a company structure created in 2010 to hide income generated in Spain from his image rights from tax authorities, which is a 'voluntary' and 'conscious' breach of his fiscal obligations in Spain," it said.

Prosecutors accuse the Portugal international of evading tax via a shell company based in the British Virgin Islands and another in Ireland, known for its low corporate tax rate.

In addition, they say he only declared €11.5 million of Spanish-related income from 2011 to 2014, while what he really earned during that time was close to €43 million.

And finally, they accuse him of "voluntarily" refusing to include €28.4 million in income linked to the sale of his image rights for the 2015 to 2020 period to a Spanish company.

Get notified about breaking news on The Local

Share this article

From our sponsors

QUIZ: Which influential Icelander are you?

Iceland may have a population of just over 330,000 people (all with equally unpronounceable names) but that doesn't stop it churning out a stream of globally-renowned people. Take our quiz to discover your Icelandic spirit animal.