Cristiano Ronaldo accused of tax avoidance

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Cristiano Ronaldo
Football Soccer - Barcelona v Real Madrid - Spanish La Liga Santander- Nou Camp Stadium, Barcelona, Spain - 3/12/16. Real Madrid's Cristiano Ronaldo reacts after missing a chance to score during the "Clasico". Reuters/Sergio Perez

Real Madrid star Cristiano Ronaldo has been accused of tax evasion, says news reports in Spain. It was alleged that he moved the amount of €63.5 million (AU$90.21 million) to Virgin Islands. The allegations came from a website called Football Leaks which showed two terabytes of data, the largest leak in sports. It passed the said documents to a Germany's weekly newspaper Der Spiegel.

Der Spiegel admitted that it did receive 1.9 terabytes of confidential financial data from Football Leaks. In one of their news articles, they reported that Cristiano sold €75 million (AU$106.45 million) of advertising copyrights to two offshore companies in the British Virgin Islands. They also revealed that they were able to share the confidential data with nine other European media outlets.

His management company, Gestifute, declared that the accusations were unfounded. They said in a statement in one of the UK newspapers that Cristiano is in compliance with his fiscal obligations in Spain and in the United Kingdom. There were also accusations that Jose Mourinho could also be involved in this issue.

"Neither Cristiano Ronaldo nor Jose Mourinho have ever been involved in legal proceedings regarding the commission of a tax offense. Any insinuation or accusation made to Cristiano Ronaldo or Jose Mourinho over the commission of a tax offence will be reported to the legal authorities and prosecuted," Gestifute said.

El Mundo's front page headline on Saturday of La Liga's biggest game stated that Cristiano Ronaldo had avoided tax by using offshore companies in the British Virgin Islands. El Mundo continued that the reason why this issue has been opened is because of Cristiano’s offshore activity in his 2014 tax declaration. The Spanish tax authorities investigated him last December, focusing on irregularities in his tax declarations as a non-resident for years 2011, 2012 and 2013.

The claims were published by an international consortium of journalists. It claimed that a trove of about 18 million documents were obtained on Ronaldo. The European Investigative Collaborations (EIC) consortium includes German newspaper Der Spiegel, Spain's El Mundo and the UK's Sunday Times.

Cristiano has not given any feedback nor comments about these allegations against him.

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