The court decided that they had used a network of shell companies to evade taxes on the income from the player’s image rights. According to the prosecutor’s office for tax crimes in Catalonia, the sale of Messi’s image rights had been hidden using a complex web of shell companies in Uruguay, Belize, Switzerland and the United Kingdom.The sentence can be appealed. Possibly, Messi will not go to prison because in Spain people sentenced of less than two years for a non-violent crime can opt to do probation instead. Messi said his father had control of his financial affairs. Messi, five times World Player of the Year and one of the world’s highest-earning athletes had an estimated income of $350 million (315 million euros) in the past 10 year.