24-year-old renowned Brazilian footballer and Barcelona striker Neymar had some of his assets blocked by a federal court in Sao Paulo Brazil as a result of tax evasion. He was banned from using almost $50 million worth of assets some of which include a yacht, a jet and other properties.
The motive behind the court order was because Neymar was accused of tax evasion between 2011 and 2013.
Neymar was accused of not paying a huge sum of 63.3 million reais ($15.7 million) in taxes between 2011 and 2013. However, the judge froze three times that amount he owed for security reasons and to cover potential interest and fines, according to a judicial order explaining the action.
Other assets frozen by the court are three companies owned by Neymar and his father. Prosecutors accused Neymar of setting up these companies as a shield to pay a lower rate of tax.
This was revealed by officials to Reuters on Tuesday.
“Official documents were sent to several entities such as port authorities, offices that register properties, and civil aviation authorities (so that Neymar no longer has use of these assets),” the judge said in a statement sent to Reuters.
Towards the end of last year,the court froze 188.8 million reais ($46.7 million) worth of assets but during that period, Neymar was still free to use those assets until recently. Officials also corrected the previous amount to 192 million reais ($47.5 million).
Meanwhile, an appeal to also block Neymar’s future earnings was declined , officials said.
The total assets of the 24-year-old Brazilian footballer were given as 244.2 million reais ($60.4 million).
The response from Neymar concerning the issue was that of denial of any wrongdoing.
An auditor with the federal tax agency told the Associated Press news agency that Neymar could still appeal the case and fortunately, he was unlikely to face jail.
“If he pays what he owes, the case is closed,” the auditor added. “Our legislation isn’t too harsh.”