FC Barcelona wishes to express to its members its surprise, indignation and total disagreement with the public prosecutor’s petition for the Club and its former president Sandro Rosell to face trial for presumed misdemeanors in the transfer of the player Neymar da Silva Santos Jr.
In recent months, FC Barcelona has declared its innocence, and has provided all of the documentation requested on numerous occasions and which has been supported by various judicial testimonies. The Club has also been advised at all times by specialists in tax law.
With respect to the specific request by the Public Prosecutors Office to charge President Josep Maria Bartomeu for a supposed tax offence in 2014, FC Barcelona also wishes to declare its utter disagreement.
In this case, the charge is related to a payment of five million euros, the final part of the 40 million that the Club was obliged to pay to the N&N company for the transfer of the player, and which it was stipulated would be paid on 31 January 2014, eight days after the change of president.
The decision to defer this payment to January 2014 and the discussion about the type of tax retentions that should be applied to the same, do not seem to be sufficient grounds to press charges. Moreover, the complementary statement presented as a precautionary and preventative measure in February 2014 already covered any interpretations that could be made with regard to the retention to be applied to this payment.
It is FC Barcelona’s wish for the judge hearing this case to reject the requests being made by the Prosecutors Office, as all of the actions involved in the player’s transfer process were conducted with no intent whatsoever to breach the law in any way.
FC Barcelona declares that, in all serenity and guided by its own prudence, that it shall act determinedly and in use of all legal resources to continue defending its own interests and those of its members. Likewise, FC Barcelona shall not allow any action to tarnish the Club’s image or to damage or dishonour what it considers to be a historic and strategic signing.