Former FC Barcelona captain Popescu, seven other Romanian football managers in jail for tax evasion

By bne IntelliNews March 4, 2014

A Romanian court has sentenced the former captain of the national football team and of FC Barcelona, Gica Popescu, to three years and one month in jail over tax evasion, HotNews online news services reported. Seven other top-level football club owners and managers in the country also received jail sentences for evading tax payments. In addition, the eight will have to pay fines in the amount of millions of euro.

Prior to the news, Popescu was seen as the leading candidate in the upcoming March 5 elections for the top seat in the Romanian Football Federation [FRF].

The case is relevant for the credibility of the judiciary system, which is struggling to become fully functional and fight corruption and tax evasion.

The cases, judged this week at the highest court of appeals, concerned the transfer of Romanian football players to top foreign clubs.

The names on the list include:

George Copos – 3 years, 8 months

MM Stoica – 3 years, 6 months

Cristi Borcea – 6 years, 4 months

Ioan Becali – 6 years, 4 months

Victor Becali – 4 years, 8 months

Jean Padureanu – 2 years, 4 months

Gica Popescu – 3 years, one month

Gigi Netoiu – 3 years, 4 months

All sentences are final, no appeal possible. No waivers nor suspension of penalties are possible either.

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