The Spanish Minister for Education, Culture and Sport, José Ignacio Wert, defended the presumption of Messi’s innocence in the tax fraud complaint filed by Spanish tax authorities, although he said that “the law is the same for everyone, even the No. 1”.
Wert explained that, so far, there has been an investigation and a complaint by the tax authorities, and that the player and his advisors currently believe that they have committed no wrongdoing.
When asked about the damage that Messi’s case could inflict on the image of Spanish sport, the minister differentiated between the “sporting arena” and the individual behaviour of sportsmen, in this case as taxpayers, which “involve the people, and not sport or their sporting activity”.
“We need to be patient and see what the investigation proves. Of course, the law is the same for everyone, even for the No. 1, but we must always presume innocence to begin with, in this and every other case,” stressed the minister.