21 Jun 2013

Messi and father to appear in court over tax charges

9:56 am on 21 June 2013

The Argentina football star Lionel Messi and his father Jorge have been ordered to appear before a Barcelona court in September after Spanish prosecutors accused the pair of tax fraud.

The Catalonia tax crime prosecutor has accused Barcelona's World Player of the Year and his father of defrauding the Spanish tax office of almost $7 million.

In the Spanish legal system, if the magistrate determines there is sufficient evidence to bring charges, he or she will do so and then proceed with a pre-trial investigation.

The complaint relates to the three tax periods of 2007, 2008 and 2009.

The pair could face up to four years in jail if found guilty, according to Spanish law.