A court has fined Barcelona €23m after determining that the Catalan giants falsified agent payments between 2012 and 2015.
The period under scrutiny started during Sandro Rosell’s presidency, who was succeeded by Josep Maria Bartomeu in January 2014. The investigation continued for an additional 18 months before concluding in June 2015.
Barcelona has been found guilty of disclosing payments to agents to avoid paying taxes on those payments, instead redirecting the funds to the players represented by those agents.
Agents were subsequently compensated for services that Barcelona claimed were unrelated to any transfers, but the court contends that “the club is compensating the agent for services that do not exist.”
In total, Barcelona owes €8,764,118 in taxes, but penalties for the severity of the violations in each year have resulted in a substantial €23m fine for the Blaugrana.
Barcelona has announced their intention to appeal the verdict.
Barcelona wants to appeal court’s ruling over agent fees
“Futbol Club Barcelona has been informed of the verdict on income tax (IRPF) of the National Court (Audiencia Nacional) regarding the appeal presented by the club with respect to the tax inspection concerning payments made to players’ agents between 2012 and 2015,” a statement read.
“Futbol Club Barcelona shall be presenting an appeal to the Supreme Court (Tribunal Supremo).
“It comes as a surprise that the Contentious-Administrative house at the National Court has not considered the most recent jurisprudence of the Supreme Court on this matter, from which certain other football clubs have been able to benefit in recent sentences on the same matter.
“The divergent criteria of the National Court is also surprising when, a few months ago, another section accepted an appeal from our club on an identical issue to the current one that derived from the same inspection in relation to the Non-Resident Income Tax.
“This ruling does not entail any payment obligation for the club at present, this contingency being properly provisioned in the annual accounts.”