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​Barcelona stand by guilty Messi over tax fraud

Further to the news that Lionel Messi has been sentenced to 21 months in prison for tax fraud, Barcelona have issued a statement saying they consider the forward to be "in no way criminally responsible".

The statement adds: "FC Barcelona continues to be at the disposal of Leo Messi and his family to support him in whatever action he decides to take in defence of his honesty and his legal interests."

Messi and his father, Jorge Messi, have been charged with defrauding Spain of €4.1m (£3.5m) between 2007 and 2009. However, neither man is expected to serve time in jail.

Ian Ferris
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Ian Ferris

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