Football: Mourinho the latest to fall foul of taxman

Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho has been accused of tax fraud to the tune of €3.3 million, the latest in a string of big names to face charges.
Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho has been accused of tax fraud to the tune of €3.3 million, the latest in a string of big names to face charges.PHOTO: AFP

Spanish authorities claim United manager owes $5.1 million; Ronaldo court date set for July 31

MADRID • Jose Mourinho was yesterday accused by Spanish authorities of failing to pay €3.3 million (S$5.1 million) in taxes at Real Madrid, as the Spanish club's star player Cristiano Ronaldo was summoned to appear before a judge next month.

Mourinho, who coached Real Madrid from 2010 to 2013, was accused of "two offences against the public treasury", the prosecutor's office said in a statement.

Prosecutors claim that the 54-year-old manager failed to declare income of €1.6 million in 2011 and €1.7 million in 2012, "with the aim of obtaining illicit profits".

Mourinho left Real Madrid in 2013 to manage English Premier League club Chelsea for a second spell before signing with Manchester United last year.

Prosecutors said Mourinho had already settled a previous claim relating to his Spanish taxes, which resulted in a penalty of €1.15 million in 2014. But tax authorities later found that some of the information presented in that settlement was incorrect, the prosecutors said.

He is the latest high-profile figure from football to be subjected to an investigation by the Spanish tax office, following the likes of Ronaldo, Lionel Messi, Neymar, Radamel Falcao, Javier Mascherano and Angel di Maria.

Ronaldo was last week accused of evading €14.7 million through offshore companies and will appear before a judge on July 31, judicial sources told AFP.

  • ACCUSED OF EVADING TAXES IN SPAIN

  • CRISTIANO RONALDO 
    €14.7m 

    LIONEL MESSI 
    €4.1m

    JOSE MOURINHO 
    €3.3m

  • €1 = S$1.55 

He and Mourinho are both clients of football super-agent Jorge Mendes, who has also been summoned to appear before the court at Pozuelo de Alarcon on June 27.

Ronaldo - on duty for Portugal at the Confederations Cup in Russia which ends on July 2 - is facing four charges of fraud through offshore companies between 2011 and 2014.

The hearing will also take place at Pozuelo de Alarcon, in the suburbs of Madrid, according to Spanish press reports.

Prosecutors accuse the 32-year-old of evading tax via a shell company based in the British Virgin Islands and another in Ireland, known for its low corporate tax rate.

In addition, they say he only declared €11.5 million of Spanish-related income from 2011 to 2014, while what he really earned during that time was close to €43 million.

STAYING PUT

Ronaldo is a Real player and will continue to be so as far as we are concerned... something really bizarre would have to happen if he were to leave this club.

FLORENTINO PEREZ , Real Madrid president, denying that star man Cristiano Ronaldo wants to leave in the wake of his tax fraud case.

They are also accusing him of "voluntarily" refusing to include €28.4 million in income linked to the sale of his image rights for the 2015 to 2020 period to a Spanish company.

The four-time World Player of the Year, who said last week his "conscience is clear", is threatening to leave Real Madrid over the affair.

However Real club president Florentino Perez has insisted that Ronaldo will be staying at the club and no offer has been received to tempt him away.

Portugal's all-time record scorer has been linked to former club Manchester United and other top clubs after running into problems with tax authorities.

"Ronaldo is a Real player and will continue to be so as far as we are concerned," Perez told Spanish sports daily Marca yesterday. "No offer has been received for him."

In an earlier report, Marca said Ronaldo has told his team-mates he was leaving and "there is no turning back". Portuguese sports daily A Bola had also claimed that Perez had already been informed of the decision.

But Perez rejected those claims.

"I have not spoken with him. We don't want to disturb his concentration with the national team," said the Spaniard. "But something really bizarre would have to happen if he were to leave this club."

AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE, REUTERS

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on June 21, 2017, with the headline 'Mourinho the latest to fall foul of Taxman'. Print Edition | Subscribe