The state attorney rejects the idea Barcelona’s Lionel Messi didn't know his tax affairs. ‘Even a 10-year-old knows about tax…’
Leo Messi and his father, Jorge Messi, are on trial for allegedly evading more than €4m in tax on image rights, with the state attorney asking that both face 22 months in prison if found guilty.
The prosecution said on Friday that they accepted the defence’s case that Lionel Messi had no knowledge of the alleged offshore schemes and he should be acquitted, Messi having insisted he was ‘only interested in football.’
However, the prosecution wants Jorge Messi to face 18 months in prison for his alleged role in the tax evasion, and the state’s attorney doesn’t believe the notion Leo Messi had no involvement.
“They are laypeople in tax matters, the player and his father, but they are able to understand what is taxed. Even a child of 10 knows. And Messi would have been able to understand this without a problem,” state attorney Mario Maza argued, AS reports.
Maza went so far as to compare Leo Messi to a ‘capo’ in a criminal organisation, someone who has no knowledge of the illegal affairs carried out in his name but benefits from them, and said he has ‘zero credibility.’