Cristiano Ronaldo accused of defrauding Spanish finance ministry of 14.7 million euros

Ronaldo is one of the most famous footballers in the world

Ronaldo has cemented his reputation as a global superstar since moving to Real Madrid in 2009

Tuesday, June 13, 2017

Real Madrid superstar Cristiano Ronaldo has been accused of defrauding the Spanish finance ministry of €14.7 million (£13 million).

The provincial prosecutor's office in Madrid has filed a lawsuit against Ronaldo, focusing on four alleged instances of fraud which it claims were committed between 2011 and 2014.

Ronaldo, the prosecutor claims, took advantage of a company created in 2010, the year after he signed for Madrid, to "hide from the treasury the incomes generated in Spain" from his image rights. It is claimed the money was deposited in the Virgin Islands.

The lawsuit is based on a report sent to the prosecutor's office from Spanish tax agency AEAT, and what the finance ministry describes as "the most recent precedent," the Supreme Court's ratification of a 21-month jail term for Barcelona star Lionel Messi.

Messi was found guilty of fraud relating to his image rights in an inferior court and the sentence was upheld last month. However the Argentine striker  is almost certain to avoid jail as sentences of less than two years in Spain are usually suspended.

Ronaldo moved to Madrid from Manchester United for £80 million in 2009 and has spent much of his time in Spain locked in a battle with Messi for the litle of best footballer in the world.

Less than fortnight ago the Portuguese forward scored two goals as Real beat Juventus 4-1 in the final of the Champions League, his fourth triumph in Europe's premier club football competition.