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Barcelona, Neymar, Messi, and tax fraud


In the final agreement between Barça and the tax authorities over Neymar's transfer, the club has recognised that "the contract and payment were designed and made with the intention of concealing the reality of the operation and the evasion of the ensuing tax obligations.." With that admission out in the light of day it's easier to understand the famous #Weareallleomessi hashtag. The people who launched that campaign are the same people who spun the tangled web of Neymar's transfer. These people clearly feel close, complicit and in solidarity with the fiscal strategy of Messi's entourage, which consists of using sham companies in tax havens to avoid paying millions in taxes due to the Spanish state.

Of course, there's an explanation, but no justification. Real Madrid's attempt to sign Neymar led Barça to stretch beyond legal boundaries and twist themselves into a legal loop knot from which it has been impossible to extricate. As for the Messi hashtag, which is no less than a public pardon for tax fraud from the club, it is easily explained by the simple necessity to continually appease Messi and keep him at the club. He is an exceptional player, and Barça depend on him. They need him to be happy, they need him to stay, and on that altar there is no sacrifice too sacred.

The invocation of the "Spain is robbing us" slogan of this new Catalan separatism, state justifications, the ignominy of the conversations between the Minister of the Interior and the Catalan regional government head of fraud, and, worse still, the judge who likened Messi to a 'Mafia Capo'. What an ugly mess. The worst thing that can happen to anyone with a persecution complex is that they be pursued. There is an explanation for all this, but there is no justification.