Thursday 25 May 2017

Barcelona Throws Weight Behind Messi

Barcelona forward Lionel Messi retains the full support of his club after his appeal against a 21-month prison sentence for tax fraud was rejected by the Spanish supreme court on Wednesday.
In July 2016, the 29-year-old Argentinian and his father Jorge were found guilty on three counts of defrauding the tax department to the tune of €4.1m (£3.5m). The pair took their appeals to the supreme court but the striker's sentence has been confirmed and he must also pay a €2.1m (£1.8m) fine. Jorge Messi's sentence has been reduced to 15 months as his attempts to repair the damage by returning the defrauded money to tax authorities were taken into consideration.

Barcelona urged their fans to express their sympathy for Messi, released a statement on their official website which read: “The club reiterates, once again, its full support for Leo Messi, his father Jorge Messi, and his family. This afternoon, Barcelona president Josep Maria Bartomeu contacted the player's family to communicate this support. The family was very grateful, not only for the gesture, but also for the support the player and his family have received from the club throughout this process. The club will continue to stand with Leo Messi, his father, and his family.”

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