Neymar could face Spanish trial over fraud scandal

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Barcelona forward Neymar could be made to face fraud charges at a trial in Spain after a judge has ruled that he should be made to do so despite the case being closed months ago, the BBC reports.

However, the case was reopened this week at the request of investment fund DIS, who claim to have been short-changed over the Brazilian's move to the Catalan giants back in 2013.

The report states that DIS are the former owners of the 24 year old's transfer rights and are claiming that they were entitled to 40% of the move that took him from Santos in his homeland.

The charges, which were also levelled at the player and his parents, were dropped in July, but Spanish judge Jose de la Mata ordered the case to be reopened in September amid protestations from DIs, who said that they received less than they were owed because part of the player's transfer fee was apparently concealed.

But it is not only Neymar that will have to return to court if all of the accuser's plans go ahead, as his parents and current and former club presidents Sandro Rosell and Josep Maria Bartomeu are also involved. The club itself is accused of having a direct involvement along with a Spanish news agency, EFE.

The club have already been ordered to cough up a fine of €5.5million (£4.7m) because of tax irregularities in the player's transfer.

Prosecutors have been told that they now have 10 days to put together a formal request for a trial.

The case was first opened in January 2014, just six months after he made the move from Santos, but the day after Rosell resigned as club president the full details of his transfer were uncovered, showing that the deal did actually cost more than £70m.

Neymar has since gone on to make a total of 154 appearances for Barcelona, scoring 91 goals in the process – including 59 in 102 league games.

I fought the law and the law won

This news comes just months after Neymar's strike partner at Barcelona, Lionel Messi, was handed a 21-month suspended prison sentence after being found guilty of tax evasion.

Both Messi and his father were handed the same sentence, but Spanish law dictates that a jail sentence that lasts under two years for a first time non-violent crime can be served out on probation. This meant that the Argentine forward wouldn't have to spend any time behind bars.

A court in Barcelona found Messi and his father guilty on three counts of tax fraud.

Neymar will be hoping that this isn't an omen for his own case...

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