Crespo, Lavezzi and top Serie A clubs caught up in alleged tax evasion | Sports| German football and major international sports news | DW | 26.01.2016
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Crespo, Lavezzi and top Serie A clubs caught up in alleged tax evasion

The new allegations follow on from Italian authorities raiding the offices of Napoli in 2012 to seize paperwork pertaining to Ezequiel Lavezzi's move to Paris Saint Germain.

A number of leading players and officials in Italy's top two football divisions have been targeted for alleged tax evasion and false accounting by Italian authorities.

Star players such as Hernan Crespo and Ezequiel Lavezzi are just some of the names among dozens reported by prosecutors in Napoli which include officials from AC Milan, Napoli and Lazio, as well as former Juventus president Jean-Claude Blanc.

According to Italian newspaper Gazzetta dello Sport, the investigation has claimed "assets valued at around 12 million euros" ($13 million) following a probe into suspicions that several agents - most of them from Argentina - colluded with Italian club officials in a tax-avoidance scheme that benefited the clubs and the players each agent represented.

A total of 64 people have been targeted by Naples authorities following a series of raids by the country's financial police, the Guardia di Finanza, on Tuesday morning.

Prosecutors believe that the scheme involved agents billing clubs in full for their fees, rather than splitting the cost with the players. This then allegedly allowed clubs to reclaim taxes for the entire agent's fee, while players neglected to declare the benefit of not having paid their representatives.

sb/msh (AFP, dpa)