Reports this evening have emerged of possible tax evasion by Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho and Real Madrid forward Cristiano Ronaldo, though the company representing the pair has swiftly denied the claims.
Arsenal midfielder Mesut Ozil has also been the subject of stories appearing in the German press regarding alleged unpaid tax while at Real Madrid, but it is as yet unclear how serious the issue is.
Both Mourinho and Ronaldo are represented by agent Jorge Mendes, whose company Gestifute have released a statement insisting no wrongdoing on their clients’ part.
Football Leaks, seemingly releasing information via German source Der Spiegel, have implicated Ronaldo in a scheme hiding as much as 150 million euros in Switzerland and the Briitsh Virgin Islands.
However, Gestifute have issued the following statement:
In March 2016, a number of different companies connected to the world of sports were victims of a cyberattack in several European countries, including Spain. As a result of this, some of the companies complained to the Spanish Court of Justice. The Spanish Court has made an order prohibiting the publication of information obtained as a result of the cyberattack since it constituted a criminal offense. This investigation is subject to secrecy, so no further information about the investigation can be revealed.
After more than eight months since the attack, in the past weeks Gestifute, its clients, advisors and other entities related to Gestifute have received detailed enquiries from various media organizations which are all members of a pan-European consortium.
The tone used in the various questionnaires that were received is insidious, disrespectful, threatening and a far cry from the most basic standards of journalism’s best practices.
Particularly, a newspaper, which was initially not part of the consortium and which, according to the prohibitions ordered by the Spanish Court, claims to work alongside with it, has become a necessary cooperator of the referred consortium in order to try to attack the interests of Gestifute and those of its clients, thus trying to avoid its alleged legal responsibilities in the dissemination of manipulated, distorted, biased and stolen information.
One newspaper makes the unfounded allegation that Gestifute, its clients and its advisers of having, directly or indirectly, created, organized or designed tax structures to facilitate tax evasion using tax havens. The most serious and malicious allegations in the enquiries relate to José Mourinho and Cristiano Ronaldo.
Furthermore, today news have come out insinuating a reprehensible conduct by Cristiano Ronaldo and questioning his good name.
In this regard, Gestifute publicly states that:
Both Cristiano Ronaldo and José Mourinho are fully compliant with their tax obligations with the Spanish and British tax authorities.
Neither Cristiano Ronaldo nor José Mourinho have ever been involved in legal proceedings regarding the commission of a tax offense.
Any insinuation or accusation made to Cristiano Ronaldo or José Mourinho over the commission of a tax offense will be reported to the legal authorities and prosecuted.
In addition, Gestifute publicly states that:
We always act with the highest level of professionalism in our relationships with our clients and the authorities in all those countries in which we operate.
Our goal as a company is to provide the best advice to our clients, always within the framework of the applicable law at the time in each country we operate.
European tax authorities have different criteria in terms of image rights and foreign clients are often affected by these differences, which they respect and abide by. In any cases in which there have been disagreements with the respective authorities on the tax criteria to be applied, these have always been resolved by agreement with the authorities without legal proceedings ever being necessary.
We will not hesitate to take legal action to defend ourselves and our clients over any untrue and unlawful allegations published about us.