The capital gains investigation involving Napoli’s purchase of Victor Osimhen from Lille is being referred to the Rome prosecutors office. The Partenopei were asked to provide evidence to the FIGC prosecutor Giuseppe Chiné in January, as Osimhen’s transfer had raised eyebrows for the way it had been structured.
The Nigerian striker moved from Ligue 1 side Lille to Napoli for €72m plus €10m in bonuses, with €20m in player exchanges included in that figure. The four players were goalkeeper Orestis Karnezis, as well as three Napoli youth players who were immediately loaned out to lower division teams and then had their contracts terminated.
Italian Football and finance website Calcio e Finanza offer an update on the case, which is now due to be referred to the Rome prosecutors office:
“The crime of fraudulent declaration would be insubstantial and destined to be dismissed, the crime of false social communications in the annual financial statements would remain standing. But Napoli’s financial statements were approved in Rome, and it is there, at the capital prosecutor’s office, that what remains of the Naples prosecutors’ investigation into alleged fictitious capital gains around the purchase of Nigerian striker Victor Osimhen in 2020 is likely to end.
This is the turning point – writes Il Fatto Quotidiano – in the investigation into the purchase from Lille of the man who symbolized the Neapolitan Scudetto.
De Laurentiis himself was one of the five suspects named in a search warrant executed in June last year between Rome and Castel Volturno, the club’s registered offices: acquisitions of documents and computer material including cell phones and PCs that aimed to shed light on the most expensive purchase in the history of the blue team: more than €71 million.
Of these, Lille had received €50 cash and the rest through the transfer of Greek goalkeeper Orestis Karnezis (who retired last year) and three players from the youth sector: Luigi Liguori, Claudio Manzi and Ciro Palmieri, never seen playing but valued at the time at high prices, especially in proportion to their experience.
A figure whose balance sheet entry was deemed by prosecutors Vincenzo Piscitelli and Francesco De Falco to be an “objectively non-existent operation in part in the amount of 21,250,000 euros, and fictitious capital gains totaling 19,947,363 euros.” The taxable income believed to be overcharged by more than 21 million euros would have resulted in VAT evasion of €4.6 million. But the investigation would have ascertained that the operation, from a tax point of view, involved only a change in the operating loss that was still “in the red,” and therefore it was difficult to configure an intention to evade taxes.
Having collapsed the hypothesis of fraudulent declaration, the Naples prosecutors in the coming weeks could send the file to Rome. It would then be up to the Capitoline prosecutors to assess the fate of the charge of false corporate communications that saw De Laurentiis under investigation in Naples along with the board of directors at the time: his wife, two sons and Andrea Chiavelli.”