offpitch | 2016-07-08
Judge archives the DIS case against Barcelona and Neymar
One of the controversies that came with Neymar's signing is close to an end
Catalunya Radio reports Judge De la Mata has decided to archive the second case regarding Neymar’s transfer, the one that started with the complaint filed by the investment group DIS against FC Barcelona, Santos FC, Neymar and his father.
The judge ruled that the contract signed between Barça and Neymar in 2011 did not affect the free transfer market as the plaintiffs suggested and that there can be no criminal prosecution for an issue regarding contract interpretation that can be solved in civil court. According to Cadena Ser, the prosecution will appeal this decision.
On June 17, 2015, DIS filed a complaint for fraud and private corruption against the accused. According to DIS’ version of events, the clubs, Neymar and his father had simulated contracts to hide part of the money that was paid for the transfer to reduce the part that was meant to be paid to the investment fund. “We were victims of fraud,” Roberto Moreno, executive director of DIS explained.
This decision, favorable to the club and Neymar, closes the cases related to the player’s transfer, given the fact that a few days ago, Barça’s board ratified the deal made between the club’s legal services and the prosecution and the state attorney’s office in the first Neymar case.
This deal exonerates Josep Maria Bartomeu and Sandro Rosell of all responsibility, while the club accepts it committed two fiscal offenses (corresponding to 2011 and 2013) and will pay a €5.5-million fine.
Diari Ara had access to the original contract signed between Neymar, with his agent Wagner Ribero, and the investment fund in 2009 through which the player was giving them 40 percent of his federative rights, which he had obtained from Santos a few months before. At that point Neymar was still just a promise in the world of football, he had just turned 17 and he had not yet made his debut with Santos (he did it the day after he signed this contract). The player accepted having a low salary in exchange for having the right to a percentage of his future transfer and being able to exploit his image rights fully.
In the case of a hypothetical future sale, Santos would get 60 percent of the transfer money and Neymar gave DIS his part, the other 40 percent, in exchange for 5 million reals, which at the time meant about €1.7 million. DIS considered the player as one of the “great promises in Brazilian football”, and they had “great expectations” that he will become “an outstanding player on the world stage.” Their gamble was big because they were paying an important figure for a player who was at the time still playing for Santos’ second team, “a youngster in the transition phase from the academy to the professional squad.” But the investment fund was sure that in the next “two years”, due to Neymar’s abilities, his “breakout will happen and he will get transferred to one of the big clubs in Europe.”
The document also stipulated the amounts that the company was going to receive depending on how the player’s sale was made or if Neymar would have somehow not made it in football. The highest figure stated there was in the case that the player would leave Santos without the written consent of the investment fund. If that were to happen Neymar had to pay them a compensation of 10 million reals, which meant about €3.5 million.
Once the player signed for Barça in 2013, DIS – which complained to the National Court in Madrid after their first complaint was rejected by a judge in Brazil – got almost double that amount, meaning 19.980.000 reals (€6.84 million). For this reason, Neymar’s defense in front of the judge was that DIS had already gotten more than the amount that was stipulated in the 2009 contract.
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WRITTEN BY: Diana Uzum
Barcelona fan since the days of Kluivert and Rivaldo. Been here for the good, the bad and the ugly.