" --IANS/EFE"
Madrid, July 23 (IANS/EFE) Former Barcelona president Sandro Rosell was questioned in Spain's criminal high court over an alleged $12 million tax fraud and misappropriation in the signing of Brazilian striker Neymar last year.

Rosell, who arrived at the Audiencia Nacional in Madrid with the club's general manager, Antoni Rossich, Tuesday defended the legality of the deal in a three-hour appearance before judges, reports Efe.

He insisted that the signing of Neymar cost the club $77 million, of which $23 million went to Neymar's former club Santos and $54 million to a company owned by the player's father.

Rosell resigned last January after being charged with hiding the real price of Neymar and avoiding the payment of $12 million in taxes.

The newspaper El Mundo alleged the total cost of Neymar's transfer was $128 million.

Judge Pablo Ruz also summoned Artur Amich, an accountant at the Deloitte consultancy firm responsible for Barcelona's financial reports.

The judge summoned the trio to court after receiving a report from the tax agency confirming the tax fraud charges.

--IANS/EFE

sr/vt


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