Modric given suspended prison sentence in tax case

The World Cup finalist has been given a suspended sentence plus a fine of just over €348,000

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Luka Modric has been given a suspended eight-month prison sentence over alleged tax fraud, it has been confirmed.

The Real Madrid and Croatia midfielder entered a plea of guilty to the accusation of defrauding the treasury of over €870,000 (£784,000/$1m).

Reports in Spain, from El Mundo , claim that Modric first defrauded €290,000 before then using Ivano SARL, a company based in Luxembourg, to take a further €579,000.

Modric paid €1 million at the start of the case, and it has been agreed that he must now pay 40 per cent of the fee that was defrauded, which totals just over €348,000.

A number of high-profile figures in football have been drawn into similar tax cases, with Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho given a suspended one-year prison sentence, as well as a €2m fine.

The Manchester United boss, who spent three years in the Spanish capital, was accused of using offshore company accounts in Ireland, the British Virgin Islands and New Zealand to conceal income from image rights in 2011.

Spanish news outlet El Mundo claims Mourinho reached a deal with tax authorities, with two six-month suspended prison sentences.

Barcelona superstar Lionel Messi was sentenced to 21 months in jail last year for failing to pay €4.1 million in taxes on image rights in 2007, 2008 and 2009, and was also given a €2m fine.

His father, Jorge Messi, was handed the same prison sentence and a smaller fine of close to €1.7m.

Cristiano Ronaldo, too, was given a suspended sentence and a huge €19m fine after he pleaded guilty to four charges of evasion between 2011 and 2014 worth a total of €14.7m.

According to EFE, that amount was reduced in his guilty plea to €5.7m, although taking into account fines, interests and other cost the sum ascends to €19m.