The Portuguese attacker is accused of defrauding the Spanish authorities out of almost €15 million, but the capital club insist he has obeyed the law
Real Madrid have expressed “full confidence” in Cristiano Ronaldo after their star forward was accused of tax fraud by the Spanish authorities.
On Tuesday, prosecutors in Madrid filed a complaint to a court in Pozuelo de Alarcon accusing Ronaldo of a “voluntary” and “conscious” breach of his tax obligations.
According to a letter sent to the court by the prosecutor’s office, the 32-year-old is alleged to have created a “business structure” in 2010 to conceal his earnings from image rights between 2011 and 2014. He is claimed to have defrauded the Public Treasury out of €14.7 million.
Ronaldo’s representatives Gestifute issued a lengthy statement strongly denying the accusation, insisting “there has never been concealment, or the slightest intention to conceal” earnings.
Gestifute, the group owned by the Madrid star’s agent Jorge Mendes, offered a breakdown of their client’s arrangements for payments related to image rights, which they say does not amount to an offshore structure for evading taxes and has not been altered since the company in question, Tollin, was established in 2004 when Ronaldo signed for Manchester United.
Madrid have now also offered their support to the four-time Ballon d’Or winner, believing him to be innocent of any wrongdoing.
A statement released on the club’s official website read: “Real Madrid C.F have full confidence in our player Cristiano Ronaldo, who we understand has acted in accordance with legality regarding the fulfilment of his fiscal obligations.
“Since his arrival at Real Madrid C.F in July 2009, Cristiano Ronaldo has always shown a clear will to fulfil all his tax obligations.
“Real Madrid C.F. are absolutely convinced that our player Cristiano Ronaldo will prove his total innocence in this process.
“Real Madrid C.F. hope that justice is done as quickly as possible so that his innocence can be proven as soon as possible.”
Ronaldo’s accusations come in the wake of Lionel Messi’s conviction for tax fraud.
The Argentine was found guilty last year and sentenced to 21 months in jail, but will not spend time in prison as sentences under two years can be spent on probation.