Lionel Messi’s tax fraud scandal worsens

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    The Spanish government may be expanding its investion in Lionel Messi's alleged tax fraud.

    Lionel Messi’s tax fraud case seems to be getting worse. (AP Photo/Manu Fernandez, File)

    Update: Lionel Messi summoned to court for alleged tax fraud

    FC Barcelona and Argentina star Lionel Messi and his father Jorge Messi can be in bigger problems than previously thought. The Spanish government could be expanding its investigation of the four-time FIFA World Player of the Year’s finances. The expanded time period would be from 2007-2012, he was being previously investigated from 2007-2009.

    Messi was in the news last week when a prosecutor in Barcelona presented charges that “la Pulga” had been concealing his real earnings from 2007- 2009 and had defrauded the Spanish government of about $5.3 million.

    AS reported, The lawsuit is being dealt with by a court in Gava, Barcelona, which has still not decided whether or not it will take action on the case, meaning that, for now, neither the footballer or his father have been ordered declare as defendants.”

    Additional problems for Messi

    The addition of the 2010-2012 tax years could bring additional problems for Lionel Messi.

    AS also reported, “Once the tax year has concluded, the tax authorities could expand the investigation to the years 2010, 2011 and 2012 to check if the footballer continued to exclude from his tax returns income derived from loaning his image rights to third parties.”

    Messi and his father still have time to fix their alleged fraud with additional declarations, but if they choose not to then they would send the result of their investigation to the prosecutor on the case.

    Lionel Messi’s alleged tax fraud is above the $160,000 limit for a tax fraud to be considered a criminal offense.

    Lionel Messi's tax fraud case is getting worse before it gets better.

    Barcelona’s Lionel Messi from Argentina looks on against Betis during their La Liga soccer match at the Benito Villamarin stadium, in Seville, Spain on Sunday, Dec. 9, 2012. (AP Photo/Angel Fernandez)

    Lionel Messi’s father could be the one that saves him

    “The public prosecutor claims that the scheme to evade the tax was initiated by Jorge Messi, who ordered the creation of a company with the aim of evading tax on Leo’s image rights in 2005, when Messi was a minor,” AS reported

    Jorge Messi could choose to take responsibility for the tax fraud scheme, which in turn, would exonerate Lio from the case.

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