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Gerard Pique handed €2.1 million tax bill

Madrid – Barcelona's Gerard Pique will be forced to pay €2.1 million to Spain's tax authorities after his conviction for rights-image fraud was confirmed, a legal source told AFP on Wednesday.

According to a May 13 decision the country's National Court rejected Pique's appeal against the 2016 sentence which required the former Spain international to pay €1.5 million in tax arrears and a €600 000 fine.

The tribunal concluded Pique had faked the handover of his rights images to his Kerad Project company to pay less tax for 2008, 2009 and 2010.

Pique, a World Cup and European Championships winner retains the right to appeal to Spain's supreme court.

The verdict comes a month after his wife, Colombian musician Shakira, was questioned by a judge near the Catalan city over alleged evasion of €14.5 million in taxes.

Her press team released a statement in which they said the artist was innocent.

The centre-back's former team-mate at the Camp Nou Neymar is under investigation by Spain's fiscal authorities over a bonus he received at Barca as well as his world-record transfer to Paris Saint-Germain.

Another of Pique's fellow club squad members Lionel Messi, paid a €2 million fine in 2016 in his own tax wrangle and received a 21-month jail term.

The prison sentence was later reduced to a further fine of €252 000, equivalent to €400 per day of the original term.

A Spanish court in January handed Portuguese forward Cristiano Ronaldo a suRead More

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