Ronaldo Denies Tax Evasion Claims During Madrid Court Appearance
Real Madrid forward Cristiano Ronaldo has denied he evaded tax or hid any details of his income from the authorities.
The Portugal international appeared at magistrates court in Pozuelo de Alarcon, a suburb of the capital, on Monday to answer charges relating to his tax returns between 2011 and 2014. Prosecutors allege Ronaldo evaded £13.1m (14.7million euros) in tax.
“The Spanish treasury knows every detail about my income, because it’s been given to them; I never concealed anything and I never tried to evade taxes,” the player told the court, according to a statement released by his management company Gestifute.
“I always make my tax returns on a voluntary basis because I think we all have to declare and pay taxes based on our income. Those who know me know what I ask my advisers to do: have everything up date and paid promptly, because I do not want any problems.”
Ronaldo claims that, contrary to the argument of the Public Prosecutor, the transfer of his image rights to a company he owned took place in 2004 and not in 2010 just after he joined Real.
“I kept the structure that managed them when I was in England…the lawyers that Manchester United recommended to me set it up in 2004, long before I thought about coming to Spain. The structure was a normal one in England; it was verified by the English treasury and ratified as legal and legitimate.”
Since 2015 the player said his image rights have been granted to an independent third party, registered in Spain, that pays tax for him. The Public Prosecutor’s charge is limited exclusively to tax on the amounts earned by the player in 2014 for granting his image rights for the years from 2011 to 2020.
“This is the time to let justice run its course. I believe in justice and I hope that, in this case, once, again, there will be a fair decision,” Ronaldo said. “In order to avoid any unnecessary pressure, or any contribution to a parallel trial, I’ve decided I won’t make any more statements on this subject until the decision is made.”