Sport Sanchez plays on after prison sentence

08:00  08 february  2018
08:00  08 february  2018 Source:   Wide World of Sports

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Arsenal ace Alexis Sanchez faces shock prison sentence after admitting tax fraud. Alexis Sanchez was not happy to be subbed off during Arsenal's win over Swansea. Play slideshow.

Sanchez would be the fifth player from Barcelona to be investigated in Spain for tax offences, after Lionel Messi, Javier Mascherano, Adriano and Samuel Eto'o. Lionel Messi received a 21-month prison sentence for tax fraud in July.

Manchester United star Alexis Sanchez.© REUTERS/Scott Heppell Manchester United star Alexis Sanchez. Alexis Sanchez has been sentenced to 16 months in prison for committing tax fraud in Spain but the Manchester United forward will avoid serving any jail time.

Local prosecutors' office Fiscalia de Barcelona confirmed that the 29-year-old has been handed two eight-month sentences for evading tax during his time at Barcelona.

But the former Arsenal playmaker will not go to prison as first-time offenders avoid jail if the sentence is less than two years.

Spanish new agency EFE reports Sanchez reached an agreement, having been accused of defrauding the Spanish Treasury of one million euros ($1.56m) and hiding the income of images rights between 2012 and 2013.

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The agency's article says the Chile forward will pay back that figure plus interest, along with a fine of 590,065 euros and will not receive public aid or tax incentives in Spain for two years.

Sanchez is the latest figure in football to have been chased by Spanish authorities.

Jose Mourinho, the Chilean's manager at Old Trafford, claimed he paid all the money owed to tax authorities from his time at the helm at Real Madrid after a November court appearance in the Spanish capital.

Lionel Messi, Angel Di Maria and Javier Mascherano have all been convicted of tax evasion in recent years, while Cristiano Ronaldo is currently fighting alleged tax fraud charges.

Sanchez's representative posted a lengthy "public declaration and clarification" about the case on Twitter.

Fernando Felicevich's statement expressed anger about "repeated, continuous and obscene leaks" of information from such cases in Spain, suggesting it pressures figures in football to accept agreements.

Felicevich pointed out that the accused are "of course almost all foreigners" and that, in this case, Sanchez's team had come to the conclusion that "it is better to accept an unfair agreement".

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