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Cristiano Ronaldo.

Cristiano Ronaldo could face up to five years in prison for multiple counts of tax evasion

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Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi might be in a bracket of their own when it comes to world class players, but that doesn't mean they don't have their fair share of problems.

Off the pitch, of course. On the pitch, things are still going extremely well for both of the superstars, Ronaldo in particular.

The Real Madrid forward recently led his side to the La Liga title and they will face Juventus in the Champions League final next week looking to win the trophy three times in four seasons.

As for Messi, it's been a rare off-season for Barcelona in their pursuit of La Liga and Champions League glory, but the Argentine forward has still managed 53 goals in 51 games and has a Copa del Rey final to look forward to.

But off the pitch, the Barca No. 10 has been dealt some bad news.

It was revealed yesterday that the appeal against Messi’s tax evasion case had been rejected by a Spanish court, it now seems that a 21-month jail sentence is inevitable.

However, Messi will escape seeing a cell because, for this offence in Spain, a sentence under two years is not served inside.

Just like the rest of their career, it seems that you can't talk about Messi without mentioning Ronaldo and his case in this instance looks a great deal worse.

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According to Spanish outlet Marca, Ronaldo’s sentence could range from as little as 15 months to as much as five years, with a possible fine of 15 million euros to be repaid.

The Portuguese legend looks to have three tax offences to his name starting in 2011 and two other tax offenses in 2012 and 2013. The report states CR7 defrauded the Spanish government in excess of 600,000 euros.

"These two crimes entail prison sentences of two to six years for each of them, which would imply the request of the State Attorney for a total minimum sentence of five years," the Spanish finance ministry said.

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In essence, each crime appears to carry a minimum term of two years in jail if found guilty and the prosecutors will seek a minimum term of five years in jail.

Naturally, given the higher volume of crimes, Ronaldo would not be exempt from jail like his long-standing rival.

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