Cristiano Ronaldo Did Not Try to Evade Taxes, Says Footballer's Agents

The Real Madrid forward has been accused by the Spanish capital's regional state prosecutor of using a shell company in the Virgin Islands to "hide his total income from Spain's tax office".

The former Manchester United player has led Madrid to back-to-back Champions League titles and its first Spanish league in five seasons, and helped Portugal to win last year's European Championship.

Soccer star Cristiano Ronaldo denied on Tuesday ever hiding any income from the taxman or committing any tax fraud in Spain, after prosecutors filed a lawsuit accusing him of defrauding tax authorities of 14.7 million euros ($16.5 million).

Footballing super agent Jorge Mendes, who manages Ronaldo among others, has also been summoned before a Spanish court as part of the probe into Radamel Falcao's alleged tax evasion, legal sources said yesterday.

"Real Madrid CF hopes that the Justice will act as quickly as possible so that its innocence can be demonstrated as soon as possible".

In a statement, the prosecutor's office said Ronaldo had knowingly used a "business structure" created in 2010 to hide his income in Spain from his image rights.

"Cristiano Ronaldo has always shown since his arrival at Real Madrid CF, in July 2009, a clear will to fulfill all his tax obligations", said the club on its website.

Gestifute, the agency representing the Portugal captain, said in a lengthy statement posted on its website the matter is a complex financial one.

It said that the footballer had not hidden any income from the tax authorities or defrauded Spain. But as the financial crisis bit deeper, that exemption was lifted, paving the way for the cases.

Spain's High Court in May cleared Neymar of fraud but he still faces a corruption trial in Spain in connection with the value of his 2013 transfer from Santos to Barcelona.

  • Stacy Allen