Ex-Chelsea Star Charged With Tax Fraud And Set To Stand Trial
Costa is alleged to have defrauded the Spanish tax authorities out of more than €1million and could face a hefty fine and a prison sentence if found guiltyFormer Chelsea striker Diego Costa is reportedly set to stand trial on charges of tax fraud in Spain next week.The 31-year-old has been accused of failing to pay more than €1 million (£813,000) worth of taxes. Ex-Chelsea Star Charged With Tax Fraud And Set To Stand Trial
Costa is alleged to have not declared €5.15m (£4.19m) of total payments received when joining Chelsea in 2014, as well as €1m in image rights.
According to the Evening Standard, prosecutors are pushing for Costa to be put behind bars for a six-month period. Such charges in Spain can be punished by a sentence in prison if the defendant is found guilty, though Costa is unlikely to be sent to jail.If found guilty, Costa could pay an increased fine to avoid jail time.
As it stands he is already facing a fine of €507,208 (£457,128), which could be upped by a further €36,500 (£32,896).
Barcelona star Lionel Messi was previously convicted of tax fraud and handed a 21-month prison sentence, which was later reduced to a fine.
Cristiano Ronaldo also struck a similar deal with the Spanish courts during his time at Real Madrid which saw him pay a €19million fine.
Costa moved to Chelsea for a fee of £32million from Atletico Madrid, to whom he has since returned.He has made 19 appearances so far this season, including both legs of their Champions League last-16 victory against Liverpool.His future at the Wanda Metropolitano could be in doubt though, as Napoli are demanding he be included in a player-
Costa is officially due to appear in court on June 4 – just a week before the La Liga season is due to resume again following the coronavirus outbreak.
Atletico are currently sixth in the table, but just two points separates them and Sevilla in third.