Manchester United manager José Mourinho has been accused of tax fraud in Spain, for the amount of €3.3 million during the time he was at Real Madrid (€1.6m in 2011 and €1.7m in 2012.) The case was presented to a local court.
In a statement released on Tuesday, the prosecutor said the 54 year-old Mourinho had committed two counts of tax fraud in 2011 and 2012 because “corporate structures were used by the accused in order to conceal revenues generated from his image rights” and failing to declare that income. Mourinho left Real Madrid in the summer of 2013.
Mourinho is the latest big name in Spanish football accused of tax fraud, including Barcelona’s Lionel Messi and Real Madrid’s Cristiano Ronaldo.
The use of tax havens is a standard practice, especially among the ultra wealthy. While legal means exist to lower a tax burden, there is a distinction to be made between employment income while in Spain, versus earning income from outside the country. This will form the basis of the litigation for Mourinho and Ronaldo.
As for Messi, he and his father were each sentenced to 21 months in prison, although he never actually went to prison.