Juventus star Cristiano Ronaldo has received a £17 million fine over image rights fraud but has avoided a potential 2-year jail term. The footballer will be sentenced to prison next month but after negotiating a deal with Spanish tax authorities won't be serving any time behind bars. After a year-long legal battle over image rights, the footballer has pleaded guilty to avoiding paying £12 million in taxes following accusations from Spanish authorities that full earnings were not declared for a period of more than 4-years.
The 33-year old will be receiving a formal 2-year sentence in mid-January, and under Spanish law sentences less than two years can be served on probation. This will be the conclusion of a year-long battle that saw the Spanish Treasury accuse Ronaldo of four counts of tax fraud spanning 2011 to 2014. Prosecutors stated they found Ronaldo to have "voluntarily" and "consciously" avoided paying taxes.
This was mostly in relation to image rights, although there was also a claim that Ronaldo had only declared £10.4 million income from Spanish sources when the true figure was reportedly £38.9 million. He is one of a string of high profile sports stars to be targeted by Spanish authorities including Messi, Mascherano and Mourinho.
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