CR7’s holiday yacht boarded by armed Spanish Customs officials

Splashed over the world’s media today are bizarre photographs depicting armed police in black crash helmets boarding the holiday yacht chartered by Portuguese football sensation, Cristiano Ronaldo.

The focus of a multi-million Spanish tax evasion probe, there was no suggestion Ronaldo’s private affairs were behind the incident – though papers have done their best to make all the inferences.

In Portugal, popular tabloid Correio da Manhã concludes its ‘exclusive’ story this morning saying: “According to fiscal authorities in Spain, Ronaldo has not paid 1.39 million in taxes for 2011; 1.66 million in 2012; 3.2 million in 2013 and 8.5 million in 2014.

For someone whose net worth has been estimated between 200 and 250 million pounds (that’s still more in euros), this could seem like small change, but stories this far suggest Ronaldo has been deeply upset by the tax probe, and hotly refutes that he owes anything.

Whatever the case, the spectre of his family holiday being so inelegantly interrupted has done the rounds of every news source provider, including photos of shocked crew watching burly gun-toting cops as they descend the yacht steps after a purported 1 and a half hour ‘inspection’.

This was apparently a ‘routine inspection’, says Spain’s Holá magazine.

CM alludes to the yacht’s “capacity” being “for up to six people plus three crewmembers”.

No-one is saying if this capacity was exceeded – which is more than possible, given CR7’s extended, close-knit family.

Hola reports: “A Customs camera filmed everything that happened during the inspection” – with the Daily Mirror adding that officials left “after discovering everything on board Cristiano’s yacht, named as AYa (sic) London, was in order”.

Ronaldo himself is understood to have left the men to make their inquiries, without getting personally involved.

Meantime, Jorge Mendes Ronaldo’s Portuguese agent and one of the world’s most successful football is under investigation by Portuguese tax authorities as well as those in Spain.

Explains CM, the accounts of Mendes’ company Gestifute “are being gone through with a fine-toothed comb” to see whether it has been paying the right amount of taxes since 2013.

Spanish tax authorities are collaborating with Portuguese counterparts, while the latter are also said to be in contact with tax authorities in other countries.

In a statement, Gestifute is quoted as telling the paper that the inspection is “absolutely normal” and that the company itself is “collaborating” with the AT tax authority according to its habitual practice of total transparency.

Holidaying off Ibiza, Ronaldo is due to attend a court hearing at the end of July, to give evidence in the ongoing probe.

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