Barcelona accused of tax fraud in Neymar signing
Spanish public prosecutors have asked for Barcelona and their former president Sandro Rosell to be tried for two charges of tax fraud committed in the signing of Brazilian star Neymar.
Meanwhile, prosecutors have also asked for the investigation of current Barcelona president Josep Maria Bartomeu and the club on an extra tax charge in 2014, which could rise to 2.85 million euros.
In a judicial file released on Monday, prosecutor Jose Perals Calleja suggests that Rosell and Barca declared an inferior fee to that which they paid for Neymar in 2013.
The prosecutors believe that Neymar cost in excess of the 57 million euros ($64.3 million, £42.7 million) declared to the Spanish tax man.
They cite the figure at a cost of 82,743,485 euros divided into sperate contracts that secured the signing.
According to the calculations of the Spanish tax authorities, Barcelona owe a total of 12,148,696 million euros in tax on the deal, which would see the overall cost of the operation rise to 94.8 million euros.
Rosell resigned as president over the affair just over a year ago when a complaint brought by one of the club’s members for misappropriation of funds was taken to court.
In his testimony before a judge on the case in July of 2004, Rosell insisted that Neymar cost the club 57 million euros, 17 of which went to his former club Santos and 40 million paid to N&N, a company owned by the player’s father.
However, following Rosell’s resignation, Barcelona also confirmed a number of extra agreements including a 10 million euro signing bonus for the player and scouting and collaborative agreements between the two clubs taking the total to 86.2 million euros.
In February of last year, the club announced that they had made a voluntary payment of 13.5 million euros to the Spanish tax authorities regarding the transfer. -AFP