Alonso facing jail over alleged tax fraud
Former Liverpool and Real Madrid midfielder Xabi Alonso is facing a possible five-year jail sentence over alleged tax fraud.
The provincial prosecutor's office of Madrid said in a statement yesterday that it is seeking a conviction against the 36-year-old ex-Spain international for alleged offences between 2010 and 2012.
Alonso, who retired at the end of last season, is accused of defrauding authorities of over 2million euros in unpaid tax.
Along with his financial advisor Ivan Zaldua Azcuenaga, and Ignasi Maestre Casanova, administrator of his shell company, Alonso is also facing a 4million euros fine, the prosecutor's office said.
The case was originally dismissed, but was reopened earlier this year. Alonso has denied any wrongdoing.
The statement said: "The Economic Crimes section of the Provincial Prosecutor's Office of Madrid is seeking five years in prison for former soccer player Xabier Alonso Olano for the commission of three crimes against the Public Treasury during fiscal years 2010, 2011 and 2012. "The representative of the Public Ministry claims the same penalty for the tax advisor Ivan Zaldua Azcuenaga and for the administrator of the company Kardazli Comercio Servicos de Consultoria e Investimentos LDA. Ignasi Maestre Casanova.
"Each of them, in addition, requires payment of a fine of 4 million euros and in concept of civil liability asks them to pay jointly 2,032,845 euros to the Tax Agency, that is, the amount total of the economic damage caused to the Tax Administration, plus the interest generated."
The charge is related to Alonso's image rights, where prosecutors claim the three men set up a contract with Maestre's business in Madeira "with the intention that he (Alonso) obtained an illicit tax benefit".
Alonso is the latest high-profile football figure to have been targeted by the tax office in Spain, with Jose Mourinho, Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo all being subject to investigations over the last 12 months.