Neymar case thrown out of Spanish court

A Spanish court has dismissed a case on alleged irregularities in the transfer of Brazilian football star Neymar to Barcelona.

National Court judge Jose de la Mata, sitting in Madrid, shelved the complaint against Neymar, his father, and Barcelona by Brazilian investment group DIS.

DIS was entitled to 40% of Neymar’s transfer from Brazilian club Santos in 2013, but it claimed it received less compensation than it should have because part of the transfer fee was concealed.

Neymar and his father, who acts as his agent, and Barcelona’s current president and his predecessor all denied any wrongdoing when they appeared in court in February.

In June, Barcelona paid a €5.5m fine to settle a separate case brought against the club by Spain’s tax authorities.

In that deal, the club acknowledged it made “an error in the fiscal planning of the player’s transfer”.

On signing Neymar in 2013, Barcelona said the price of his transfer was €57.1m. Of the initial transfer fee, Brazilian club Santos received €17.1m while Neymar’s father, also called Neymar, made €40m.

The actual cost of Neymar’s transfer, including a player bonus and the club’s complementary payment of €13.55m to Spain’s tax office, means it probably exceeds the record €100m spent by Real Madrid to buy Gareth Bale.

Last week, Barcelona announced Neymar had agreed a contract extension that will keep him at the Spanish champions until 2021.

In his three seasons, the 24-year-old has 85 goals in 141 games.

Also this week, a separate court in Barcelona found Lionel Messi and his father guilty of defrauding the state of €4.1m in unpaid taxes.


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