Cristiano Ronaldo seeks to avoid prison for alleged tax fraud
Madrid : Real Madrid striker Cristiano Ronaldo will pay the money the Spanish Treasury demands if it withdraws its request for him to be given a prison sentence for an alleged tax fraud of 14.7 million euros, Spanish media reported on Monday.
However, the Portuguese captain is not willing to admit he has committed any criminal offence, Xinhua news agency reported.
The Treasury's petition last week for an eight-year prison sentence for another former Real Madrid player, Xabi Alonso, for three cases of alleged fraud, totalling eight million euros, provoked Ronaldo and his advisors to attempt to find a negotiated solution to the charges against him, rather than continuing to fight the case through the courts.
Until now Ronaldo, like Alonso, has strongly denied he committed fraud to avoid paying tax on earnings from image rights but his idea now is to offer the Treasury a "blank cheque" to avoid a prison term.
Meanwhile, he continued to insist that despite earnings from image rights being paid to societies in various tax havens, such as the Virgin Islands, he never intended to avoid paying taxes in Spain and that he always gave orders to his advisors to pay what corresponded to him, for which reason he refuses to accept any criminal responsibility.
The media informs that Ronaldo hopes the case can be resolved administratively, adding that after Madrid President, spoke in his defence on a public radio station, he is more confident this will be the case.