Barcelona forward Neymar’s former agent Wagner Ribeiro has been sentenced to five years and four months in prison in his native Brazil after being found guilty of tax evasion.
A court found that Ribeiro had “suppressed and reduced his income tax between 2002 and 2005” by declaring only €165,000 of the €1,220,000 which he had earned.
While considering the sentence, Ribeiro’s attitude to tax evasion was also taken into account, which included his advice to Neymar’s father that the player should put his money in tax havens after his assets were frozen in Brazil.
The agent’s defence insisted it was a loan and are expected to appeal the decision.
However, sentences of less than eight years in Brazil are served in semi-open prisons, which means Ribeiro will be allowed to work outside the prison during the day and can also apply to spend additional time away from the jail.
He must return to the prison each night, though, which is effectively a half-way house as it has neither fences nor guards to prevent escape, but he has had his passport taken off him.
Ribeiro was most recently an intermediary in Vinicius Junior’s transfer to Real Madrid and has previously worked with many footballers on a range of transfers.