Lionel Messi has been ordered to stand trial in the 2013 tax fraud case against him and his dad Jorge, it has been reported.
The football star and his father are accused of defrauding the Spanish state in the tune of 4.2 million euros (around $5 million) in taxes from 2007 to 2009. According to prosecutors, the two men hid the taxes using financial institutions in Uruguay, Belize, Switzerland and the United Kingdom.
However, Messi’s defense attorney is arguing that his client should not be held responsible for the tax evasion since his father is the one managing his finances. But the court disagreed, saying that he could have known about the companies used to hide the money.
As ENTmania! reported back in 2013, Messi was facing up to six years in jail, but now the public prosecutor is recommending that he face 22 months in prison if convicted. His father, on the other hand, could face 18 months in jail and a fine of more than 2 million euros.
The trial will take place at a court in Vilanova y la Geltru near Barcelona at an undisclosed date. It is worthy to note that in 2013, Messi and his dad paid the Spanish authorities 5 million euros as a ‘corrective payment’ after they were formally charged.
[Image credit: Getty]