] Barcelona
Last Tuesday, Leo Messi upon his arrival in Barcelona felt annoyed by the entry of several actuaries of Hacienda in his private plane after landing at El Prat Airport . ABC revealed that it was a tax inspection of his private jet. The lawyer Daniel Aroca partner of the Tax Department of Auren Abogados explains this type of action, which is not usually done every day but is not as unusual as one might believe.
"Although the exact reason for the verification carried out is unknown, it has been speculated on the relationship that said entry may have with the tax inspection which it was subjected to a few years ago and which gave rise to to a criminal procedure for tax offense, and even with some unknown black hand, given the peculiar situation that the player is going through with his current club, as Leo himself dropped before the media after landing. However, it is highly probable that it is not necessary to resort to a reason other than that which has determined similar checks to other owners of private planes.
Specifically, although the Treasury can enter airplanes In order to discover goods and activities that have not been declared, investigate hidden income that may have financed the acquisition of said assets, or even to develop executive procedures aimed at the collection of tax debts, what is certain is that for some years now, the Treasury has been investigating many users of private jets who could have hidden their status as taxpayers of the Special Means Tax on certain means of transport (IEMT) commonly known as Registration Tax which in the case of aircraft amounts to a rate of 12% on the value of the aircraft. By way of example, if the value of the aircraft is 15 million euros, the associated tax would amount to 1.8 million euros .
In this sense, although initially, it was always said that Leo Messi had acquired a private plane in Argentina for legal purposes, in fact, the aircraft would have been purchased by an Argentine air navigation company (the aircraft's base being in Argentina) which in turn, would have proceeded to lease Leo through a leasing contract without the footballer would have satisfied the IEMT, based on the premise that the owner of the aircraft is not a taxpayer resident in Spain.
If the speculative reasoning continues, in similar cases involving the acquisition of aircraft in Spain, it is now some years that the Treasury recovered about 60 million euros in the Courts and has investigating people with great fortunes who used the following scheme with which they managed to avoid the tax: the private plane was chosen, they made an air navigation company bought the private plane without paying the tax since these companies are exempt from it by law, and finally, the company leased the plane to the taxpayer through leasing with an option to purchase that he is the final and exclusive user of the aircraft, and that at the end of the day he acted as owner for all purposes.
In the case of Messi, it must also be added that the rule itself establishes that those aircraft whose lessee is established or resides in Spain, must be registered in the Civil Aircraft Registration Registry and as a result, go to the Treasury to pay the corresponding registration tax.
If it was confirmed that, as is vulgarly said, "the shots go out there", it would have been a verification through which other great fortunes of the country have passed such as Manuel Jove, Enri that Bañuelos (Astroc), Villar Mir (Grupo Villar Mir), Planeta, Iberdrola, Telefónica, Acciona, the Polancos and a long etcetera, so the verification would have more to do with the purely tax collection spirit of the AEAT, than for other less conventional reasons. ”