Judge to investigate Neymar deal
(BDCi) — A Spanish judge has agreed to investigate Neymar’s move from Santos to Barcelona last summer following a complaint from a Barcelona supporter over the transfer.
Investigating judge Pablo Ruz has formally decided to accept the petition that it will look formally at the deal, in which Barca said they paid 57 million euros for Neymar but others say as much as 95 million euros may have changed hands.
The court is to ask FIFA and the Neymar & Neymar agency (N&N) run by the player’s father for the various documents lodged for the transfer, amid reports that different versions of the contracts involved exist. The court has also requested to see the alleged side-agreements made with Santos which are said to have involved 7.9 million euros being paid for options on three other younger players at Santos and nine million euros for two friendly games.
Barca president Sandro Rosell had repeatedly claimed that a confidentiality agreement had prevented him from discussing exactly who was paid in the deal and the Catalan club has admitted the deal was “complex” but strongly criticized the investigation and hinted at a conspiracy against them based from Madrid.
As details of the investigation leaked out and the pressure mounted, Rosell said on Monday that he would be happy to testify in court if asked.
The Europa Press Agency reported on Wednesday that Ruz had accepted the petition from Barca member Jordi Casas and potential “irregularities” in the transfer would now be officially investigated.
“Sufficient elements can be deduced to investigate… whether or not there are possible irregularities… in the transfer of the Brazilian player… with a relevant legal penalty,” the court documents reportedly say. According to Europa Press, the investigation will also check for a lack of correspondence between the initial and final agreements and financial obligations of these documents.”
Such ” a lack of correspondence” could be of interest to tax authorities in Brazil and Spain, as well as former third-party investors in South American country who held a share of Neymar’s “playing rights” and now claimed they are owed significant amounts of money.
Long-time Barca member Casas submitted the petition after first asking the club for full disclosure of the transfer but was ignored. He has said that he would not have taken the case if the Blaugrana board had just been honest with him from the start.