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Super-agent in Portuguese tax probe

Super-agent in Portuguese tax probe

Portuguese tax inspectors were examining the accounts of football super-agent Jorge Mendes on Wednesday, his company said, two weeks after he was charged in Spain with tax fraud.

The 51-year-old Mendes represents Cristiano Ronaldo, Jose Mourinho, Radamel Falcao and a host of other top earning stars, many of whom are being investigated in Spain over allegations they hid earnings from image rights in off-shore accounts.

“An inspection procedure is currently underway and it is being carried out in normal conditions,” a spokesman for Mendes’s firm Gestifute told AFP on Wednesday, adding the company had already been subject to a series of similar inspections that had passed off without incident.

The investigation in Portugal concerns the past three years and is focusing on whether Mendes had created shell companies for his clients, a charge which he recently denied in a Spanish court investigating alleged tax evasion by Monaco striker Radamel Falcao.

Spanish prosecutors have accused Mendes’s most celebrated client Ronaldo of $16.76 million (14.6 million euros) tax fraud and he is due to testify in court on July 31.

Portuguese defender Fabio Coentrao, accused of evading nearly 1.3 million euros, made a settlement with the Spanish taxman last week.

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