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Brazilian football world champ booted from home for tax arrears

December 12th, 2009
Brazilian football striker Romario

Brazilian football striker Romario

Judicial authorities have evicted world famous Brazilian football striker Romario from his luxurious $4.7-million apartment after it was sold for tax debts, a court spokesman said on Friday.

Romario de Souza Faria, 43, continued to live with his family in the plush 700 sq. meter apartment on the Atlantic Ocean on the outskirts of Rio de Janeiro after it was auctioned off in August for tax arrears, totaling some $544,000.

Romario was on vacation with his family in northeastern Brazil and court officials took the opportunity to change all the locks on the apartment and turn over the real estate to its new owner. The athlete was notified of the incident by telephone.

On Thursday, Romario was also sentenced to 18 months of community service and fined $23,000 for tax evasion.

According to tax investigators, Romario did not declare income received in 1996-1997 when he was playing for Rio de Janeiro’s Flamengo and at the same time was the advertising spokesman for a leading Brazilian brewery.

The striker has earned championship titles in Spain, The Netherlands, and Brazil, and helped his home country take home the Silver Medal in the 1988 Olympics. In 1994, Romario took his team to the World Championships and later named Footballer of the Year.

In May 2007, Romario made his 1,000th career goal.

Romario has played for Brazil’s Vasco Da Gama, Flamengo, Fluminense, Holland’s PSV Einhoven, Spain’s Barcelona and Valencia, Qatar’s Al-Sadd, the U.S.’s Miami, and Australia’s Adelaide United.

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