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Neymar and Barcelona cleared of fraud following move from Brazil

The Brazil forward was on trial after irregularities emerged in his move from Santos

Brazilian star Neymar has been cleared of any wrongdoing in his move to Barcelona in 2013 by Spanish court.

The 30-year-old has been found not guilty along with his father, the former Presidents of both Santos and Barcelona and the two clubs themselves following trial in October.

The case stemmed from third-party DIS, who owned 40% of Neymar’s rights during his time at Santos. They claimed that the declared fee (17m euros) was in fact lower than the actual fee handed to Santos, and that they had lost out as a result, and were demanding a five-year jail sentence for Neymar as well as a 149m euro fine for those accused.

This came as an additional 66m euros was spent bringing the Brazilian to the Camp Nou, through payments to his father and to a private company, taking the total fee to a total of 83m euros despite the minimal transfer fee paid to Santos.

Neymar went on to play 186 times for Barcelona, racking up 105 goals and 75 assists in that time before making a controversial switch to Paris Saint Germain four years later.

In a short statement, however, the Spanish court reached its verdict on Tuesday.

It followed the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) reaching a similar verdict over Santos’ appeal in 2020, explaining that:

“The CAS considers that the contract between Santos and the player was ended by mutual agreement, that FC Barcelona did not infringe any transfer agreement when it paid additional amounts to the father of the player and to the N&N company and that FC Barcelona did not behave in a fraudulent manner when it signed a pre-contract with Neymar Jr, nor when it signed a transfer agreement with Santos”.


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Ben Browning

Football writer and analyst. Long-time writer of all things Arsenal and avid watcher of European football. Happy to discuss all things football over on Twitter.

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