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Prosecutors Seek 10-Year Tax Fraud Sentence For Ex-Barcelona Striker Samuel Eto’o

Samuel Eto'o Fils
Samuel Eto’o Fils

Spanish prosecutors are seeking a prison term of more than 10 years for the former Barcelona striker Samuel Eto’o for alleged tax crimes committed when he played for the Catalan club.

According to Spanish paper, El Pais, the Cameroon footballer’s alleged tax crimes date from 2006 to 2009 when he played for Barcelona, and he managed to defraud the Spanish government of about 3.5 million euros through an illegal, well crafted structure for his image rights.

The Guardian reports below…
In addition to a sentence of 10 years and six months, prosecutors are also demanding a fine of £12.11m for the four counts of tax fraud for supposedly defrauding Spain’s tax authority of almost £3.21m from 2006 to 09, according to court documents released on Thursday.
Prosecutors are seeking the same punishment for the player’s representative at the time, José María Mesalles Mata. The administrator of a company that facilitated the deals, Manuel de Jesus Lastre Abreu, is facing more than six years in prison and a fine of £1.85m. Prosecutors also want Eto’o to relinquish any possible fiscal incentives for a long period.
Eto’o and his lawyers could not be immediately contacted for comment, but in the past the player denied wrongdoing, saying he was not directly involved in his tax matters.
Eto’o is among other current and past Barcelona players facing legal problems in Spain. In July, Lionel Messi and his father were sentenced to 21 months in prison for tax fraud, although they were not sent to jail because sentences of less than two years for first offences are usually suspended in Spain.


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