Lionel Messi sentenced to 21 months in prison

Lionel Messi.
Lionel Messi.

Barcelona footballer, Lionel Messi, has been sentenced to 21 months in prison after a Spanish court found him guilty of tax fraud.

Prosecutors said that Messi and his father defrauded Spanish tax authorities of €4.1m (£3.5m) over the period 2007-2009.

Messi and his father, Jorge Horácio Messi, were both sentenced to 21 months in prison on Wednesday.

The sentence can be appealed through the Spanish supreme court.

However, under Spanish law, a prison sentence under two years can be served under probation, meaning Messi and his father are unlikely to go to jail.

The court ordered Messi to pay a fine of around €2m (£1.7m) and his father to pay €1.5m (£1.2m) for the crimes.