Judge opens proceedings for Neymar's corruption trial

Neymar Asked to Stand Trial For Fraud By Spanish Court

The Spanish National High Court has cleared Neymar of all charges of fraud pertaining to his transfer from Santos to Barcelona back in 2013.

The other defendants will be the current and former Barcelona presidents Josep Maria Bartomeu and Sandro Rosell, FC Barcelona, Santos and NN Consultoria. They accuse Barcelona, Santos and the Neymar family of concealing the real transfer fee.

Neymar's arrival from Brazil's Santos has been a huge success for the Spanish champions on the pitch but a judicial nightmare off it.

Barcelonasaid at the time of Neymar's move that the transfer figure was €57.1m (about R855.7m), of which €40m (about R599.4m) was paid to Neymar's family.

Sentences for first time offenders of non-violent crimes with a jail-term of two years or under are suspended in Spain meaning jail time is unlikely.

The case stems from a complaint by DIS, a Brazilian company that owned 40 percent of the rights to Neymar when he was atSantos.

DIS believe it was cheated out of a percentage of their share of the deal, due to collusion between Barcelona, Santos and Neymar. However, Neymar could be banned from playing during a judicial sentence.

In July 2016 a judge ruled that irregularities in the transfer were detected but said it was an issue for a civil court, not a criminal court, to settle.

The investment group claimed that it had received less money than it was entitled to when Neymar joined Barcelona from Santos for 49 million pounds in 2013.

Neymar is far from the only Barca star to find himself embroiled in problems with the Spanish authorities.

Yet the trial will do nothing to improve Barcelona's image, after teammates Lionel Messi and Javier Mascherano were both handed suspended jail sentences for similar offences.

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