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Messi to appeal tax fraud charges

Spain’s Supreme Court will consider Barcelona talisman Lionel Messi’s appeal against a 21-month prison sentence for tax fraud on Thursday.

The appeal takes place three days before the “Clasico” between Barca and Real Madrid which could go a long way to deciding this season’s La Liga title, especially if Real open up a six point lead with a win, maintaining their game in hand.

Argentine Messi, five-times world player of the year, was found guilty by a Barcelona court last July on three counts of tax fraud between 2007 and 2009, resulting in a suspended 21-month prison sentence and fine of 2 million euros.

Messi’s father Jorge was given the same sentence and ordered to pay a fine of 1.5 million euros.

Spanish law is such that any sentence under two years for a non-violent crime rarely requires a defendant without previous convictions to serve jail time.

Messi, 29, and his father defrauded the Spanish tax office of almost 4.2 million euros from 2007-09 by using a web of shell companies to avoid taxes on income from the player’s image rights.

About the author

Jordan Armenise

Jordan Armenise

From Hamilton, Ontario, Canada, Jordan Armenise began his sports broadcasting journey with the Hamilton Tiger-Cats of the Canadian Football League. It was in this role where he was able to merge his best attributes: sports knowledge and personality. While with the Ticats, Jordan provided live analysis and interviews while developing a digital portfolio of one-on-one interviews, episodic sports comedy and full length sports & news features. He has also worked with CBC Sports for Hockey Night in Canada, the 2014 Sochi Olympics and Special Olympics as well as roles with Cineflix and Cream Productions as an Assistant Director.

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