Published on: Aug 05 2017 at 03:08 pm | Nnamdi [ 714 ]

Cristiano Ronaldo told a Spanish court he “would
like to return to England” due to his tax troubles in
Spain, Spanish radio station Cadena Ser reported
on Saturday.

The Real Madrid star was called to testify in court
on Monday over accusations he evaded 14.7
million euros ($17.3 million) in tax on his image
rights via a complicated web of shell companies
based in the British Virgin Islands and Ireland.

However, Ronaldo has insisted he did not create a
“special structure” to manage his image rights
when he moved to Real in 2009 but simply
maintained the one set up in 2004 while he was at
Manchester United.

That structure had been recommended to the
Portuguese captain by United via their specialist
sports lawyer Chris Farnell.
“Chris told me it was what all the footballers did
and I didn’t want to be an exception,” Ronaldo
added in court.

“On the field I always want to be an exception, but
off it I want to be like everyone else.”

If Ronaldo is found guilty he faces a fine of at least
28 million euros and potentially a three-and-a half
year jail term, according to the Gestha union of
experts at Spain’s Inland Revenue.

However, despite being just the latest in a series
of high-profile players to be investigated over their
image rights in recent years, Ronaldo believes he
is being targeted due to his fame.

“ If I wasn’t called Cristiano Ronaldo I wouldn’t be
here,” Ronaldo also reportedly told the court
according to Spanish media.

The four-time World Player of the Year posted on
social media site Instagram on Tuesday: “What
bothers people is my brilliance, insects only attack
lamps that shine!!!!”

Ronaldo will return to training with his Madrid
teammates later on Saturday for the first time
since lifting the Champions League final in June.

Madrid coach Zinedine Zidane had given Ronaldo
an extended break due to his participation in the
Confederations Cup with Portugal and his court
appearance.
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