Lionel Messi and his father have paid 5 million euros to Spanish authorities as part of an investigation into alleged tax fraud, a court statement has revealed.
The Barcelona star was accused of "hiding" more than 4 million euros earlier this year having failed to file complete tax returns from 2006 to 2009, although the 26-year-old and his father denied all wrongdoing. A court in Gava has confirmed the duo made a "corrective payment" of 5,016,542.27 euros, though they will still be required to attend a legal hearing Sept. 17.
"We have our lawyers and our wealth managers to take care of that and we trust them and they will sort this out," Messi said of the issue earlier this summer. "The truth is that I don't have a clue about all this and that is why we have people taking care of it."
Messi earns more than 40 million euros per year through wages and sponsorship deals, placing him 10th on the latest Forbes list for richest athletes.
The Argentina international is not the only top-level football professional to become embroiled in tax problems this year. At the end of July, Bayern Munich president Uli Hoeness was formally charged with tax fraud after failing to declare on a Swiss bank account.
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