According to Sky Sports, Barcelona and Argentina superstar Lionel Messi could face up to 22 months in jail if he is found guilty of defrauding the Spanish tax authorities.
Messi and his father Jorge are being accused of defrauding the tax authorities of close to £3.5million between 2007 and 2009.
However the prosecutors claim the Messi had no knowledge of the situation and that it was down to his aforementioned father.
The judge presiding over the case has heeded the advice of the state attorney and decided that the player himself should also stand trial for the offences. If found guilty of the said offence the Argentinian international could be jailed for up to 22 months.
Jorge and Lionel Messi have already paid the Spanish tax authorities £3.7million in tax owed in 2013, in a ‘corrective payment’, after they were both formally charged with the offence.
Messi is currently sidelined through injury and the case continues. It seems unlikely that Messi will be jailed for the offence, but it cannot be completely ruled out.
It does seem like he knew little of the situation and the whole situation has tarnished his previous squeaky clean image.
Will Lionel Messi really be hailed for defrauding the Spanish tax man?