Despite being the highest-paid athlete in the world, Cristiano Ronaldo skimps on his taxes. Last year, reports surfaced that the Portuguese soccer star owed more than 14.7 million euros (approximately $16.5 million U.S. dollars) in unpaid taxes in Spain. Because he thought he could cheat the system, the Real Madrid forward in now in real trouble.
At the time of the writing, Ronaldo is still in court with the Spanish authorities. He pled not guilty, but the situation does not look good for the five-time Ballon d’Or winner. He stands accused of using a defrauding scheme that many of his fellow soccer stars, including Lionel Messi and Alexis Sanchez, have been found guilty of committing.
These millionaire athletes funnel staggering amounts of money made through image licensing (payments for appearing in video games, advertising, and the like) into offshore companies. As much as fans may want to believe Ronaldo’s not-guilty pleas, the idea that a European soccer star would have millions of dollars innocently sitting in the British Virgin Islands baffles the mind.
Of course, the soccer star didn’t set up this suspiciously complex web of offshore companies on his own. He had advisors to help him do it. As we often see in these celebrity cases, Ronaldo is playing dumb. When he appeared in front of a judge in Madrid, he cited only having six years of schooling as a reason why he could never have planned something as complicated as tax fraud.
The truth is that it doesn’t take a mastermind to commit a crime. All you need is some greed and a sense that you are above the law. Why else would someone who makes more money than LeBron James feel the need to squirrel away money and pay top dollar for advisors to help him do it? The case is still proceeding, and there’s jail time on the line.
If you have an income tax problem, Golden Tax Relief can help you with your problems. We believe in peace, protection, and posterity. We will help give you the peace of mind that the IRS will not levy your accounts, we will stop the IRS from coming to your home or place of business, and we want to help ensure a future (without the IRS issues). Please go to our website (www.goldentaxrelief.com) or call us at any time (844-229-8936).
Ben Golden, EA