Barcelona superstar Lionel Messi has been sentenced to 21 months in jail by Spain’s supreme court according to media reports in Spain.
Spanish newspaper El Pais says the court ratified an earlier sentence conferred by a regional tribunal in Barcelona, and found Messi guilty of defrauding Spain’s finance ministry of 4.1 million euros.
The Argentine playmaker was found guilty of three financial crimes, relating to his earnings in the years 2007, 2008 and 2009.
The court found that Messi had failed to pay tax on image rights totaling around 10.1 million euros accrued during this period.
Messi’s father, Jorge Horacio Messi, received the sentence, the pair given seven months for each of the years in which the offences occurred.
However both men are likely to avoid jail, as sentences of under two years in Spain are usually suspended unless there is a prior offence.
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