The Spanish tax authority has opened an inspection in to the tax affairs of Diego Costa, Filipe Luis, James Rodríguez, and Jackson Martínez, according to El Confidencial.
In the case of Diego Costa and Filipe Luis, it is being conducted in collaboration with the British Inland Revenue, as it concerns their transfers from Atlético Madrid to Chelsea.
More Mendes clients inspected
The four footballers, who are all represented by Jorge Mendes, are being inspected to identify whether they used similar structures for their image rights to Cristiano Ronaldo, Jose Mourinho, Radamel Falcao, Fabio Coentrao, and Ricardo Carvalho. Ronaldo, Real Madrid’s star man, is facing charges of tax fraud totaling €14.8m, the largest figure in question.
El Confidencial explained that the players all used offshore companies to receive payments in respect of image rights. Generally, those companies were based in the British Virgin Islands, as well as Irish companies MIM and Polaris Sports. Polaris is managed by Luis Correia, the nephew of Jorge Mendes. Mendes himself owns a 30% stake in the company. Problems have arisen because the Spanish tax authorities were not aware of these arrangements.
Costa, Luis, James, Jackson
Diego Costa created an offshore structure for his image rights, but did so when he had already moved to Chelsea. A spokesperson for Gestifute, the company owned by Jorge Mendes, emphasised to El Confidencial that it is a normal inspection, and that they doubt the tax authorities will be able to reclaim anything.
A company based on the British Virgin Islands, “Kenalton Assets Limited”, managed James Rodríguez’ image rights. That company is registered to the same building in Road Town as the companies that managed the image rights of Cristiano Ronaldo and Jose Mourinho, but Gestifute have pointed out that James had a different structure.
Gestifute only had a relationship with the other two players in respect of one-off transfers. Mendes managed Filipe Luis’ move to Chelsea, and subsequent return to Atlético Madrid. While Gestifute assure that they only managed Jackson Martínez’ move from Atlético to China.