Ney­mar's as­sets worth $50 mil­lion frozen

The Pak Banker - - MARKETS/SPORTS -

Brazil­ian au­thor­i­ties have blocked as­sets of Barcelona star Ney­mar, in­clud­ing a yacht, a jet and sev­eral prop­er­ties worth al­most $50 mil­lion. A Sao Paulo fed­eral court re­jected an ap­peal from the Brazil­ian striker last week and started is­su­ing war­rants to freeze the as­sets worth 192 mil­lion re­als (al­most $50 mil­lion), Brazil­ian me­dia re­ported to­day.

Last year, Ney­mar, his fam­ily and re­lated busi­nesses were found guilty of evad­ing 63 mil­lion re­als in taxes (al­most $16 mil­lion) be­tween 2011 and 2013 when he was play­ing for Brazil­ian club Santos. He has de­nied any wrong­do­ing. The 23-year-old Ney­mar used the jet to travel to Brazil for World Cup qual­i­fy­ing matches and hol­i­days. Ia­garo Jung Mar­tins, an au­di­tor with Brazil's fed­eral tax agency, told The As­so­ci­ated Press that Ney­mar isn't likely to go to jail if he pays what reg­u­la­tors say he owes.

"He can still ap­peal that de­ci­sion, but it is a step for­ward," Mar­tins told the AP. "Noth­ing changed to what was in place last year: if he pays what he owes, the case is closed. Our leg­is­la­tion isn't too harsh."

The as­sets seizure is the lat­est in a streak of bad news for the Brazil­ian star off the pitch.

On Feb. 2 Ney­mar and his father were ques­tioned for three hours in a Madrid court about the player's trans­fer to Barcelona. The case was brought by Grupo Sonda, which in­vested in Ney­mar early in his ca­reer and was al­legedly en­ti­tled to 40 per­cent of the to­tal trans­fer amount. Barcelona main­tains the deal cost the club 57.1 mil­lion euros (then $74 mil­lion).

Santos of­fi­cially re­ceived a pay­ment of 17.1 mil­lion euros ($18.5 mil­lion), with the re­main­ing 40 mil­lion euros ($55.5 mil­lion) go­ing to a com­pany owned by Ney­mar's father, Ney­mar Santos. But in­ves­ti­ga­tions in Spain later showed that Barcelona spent nearly 83.3 mil­lion euros ($90 mil­lion) to ac­quire Ney­mar.

For­mer and cur­rent Barcelona pres­i­dents and rep­re­sen­ta­tives of Santos were also ques­tioned. The Brazil­ian club also claims to have been hurt by the trans­fers. All par­ties de­nied any wrong­do­ing.

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