Former Brazilian international Ronaldinho is nearing the end of his sentence for his role in a fake passport scam. The Barcelona legend has been under house arrest in Paraguay since early July after Ronaldinho and his brother Roberto de Assis Moreira, who is also his manager paid £1.2million for their bail. However, Ronaldinho, who in the coming days will be released from house arrest in Paraguay, plans to return to live in Castelldefels, where he will be former Barcelona teammate Lionel Messi's neighbour once again.
According to a report by ESPN, after the end of the Ronaldinho prison sentence, the former World Cup winner plans to return to Castelldefels. The former Barcelona forward and his brother, Roberto, were detained in Paraguay for trying to enter the country with fake passports. The passport allegedly was in Ronaldinho's name, with his correct birthplace and date of birth, but it claimed he was a naturalised citizen of Paraguay. The authorities were investigating the brothers over alleged money laundering. After spending time in prison, the duo were allowed into house arrest and are expected to be released permanently soon. The Ronaldinho prison sentence though is about to end soon, with reports by The Sun suggesting that the prosecutors have compiled the majority of their case but were unable to build any further substantial evidence against either of the two.
According to reports by ESPN, the Barcelona legend plans to travel to Porto Alegre when the Ronaldinho jail sentence is over, to spend time with his family, before heading to Barcelona and taking up residence in Castelldefels. The Castelldefels region will have some familiar faces for Ronaldinho when he returns. The World Cup winner will have a former teammate and close friend Lionel Messi as a neighbour, while Leo's teammate Luis Suarez also lives close by. The Ronaldinho jail time adds to the many controversies that have followed the 40-year-old since he quit professional football.
The Barcelona legend was said to be in Paraguay to promote the charity “La Fundación Angelical,” which provides medical assistance to low-income children. He was also set to promote his book Genius of Life before he was detained at the Sheraton hotel in Ascuncion. Prosecutors in Brazil have claimed 57 of Ronaldinho's properties because he owes £1.5m in tax and unpaid fines to the Brazilian state. The Barcelona legend is said to have previously held both Brazilian and EU passports, which were confiscated according to reports. Ronaldinho is set to be £4million of debt and last year reports suggested that his bank account ad the equivalent of £5 in his name.