- Associated Press - Tuesday, February 3, 2015

BARCELONA, Spain (AP) - Barcelona president Josep Bartomeu was named a suspect by a Spanish judge on Tuesday in a tax fraud probe regarding the signing of Brazil striker Neymar.

In a court statement, National Court judge Pablo Ruz accepted the request of a state prosecutor made on Monday to include Bartomeu in the ongoing investigation into the club that started with former club president Sandro Rosell.

Ruz will investigate whether Bartomeu, as club president, defrauded Spain’s Tax Office of 2.8 million euros ($3.2 million) in 2014.

Bartomeu was summoned to appear in the Madrid court on Feb. 13.

The statement said the probe “must investigate whether the Tax Office has been defrauded said quantity, 2,845,700 euros, by FC Barcelona and by its present executive, club president Josep Maria Bartomeu.”

Hours earlier, Barcelona issued a statement saying it was “in complete disagreement” with the prosecutor’s request to name Bartomeu as a suspect. It maintained the “innocence” of the club.

Ruz said Bartomeu will be investigated for alleged unpaid taxes for a payment of 5 million euros to the company N&N;, owned by Neymar’s father, along with another 472,500 euros in image rights and agents fees. Neymar’s father, also named Neymar, is his agent.

Prosecutor Jose Perals said the unpaid taxes - including the amount attributed to Bartomeu’s oversight - amounted to more than 12 million euros.

Neymar’s transfer fee has been under scrutiny since his presentation at the Camp Nou on June 3, 2013.

Rosell resigned in January 2014 after Ruz agreed to hear a lawsuit brought by a club member into whether Rosell misappropriated funds to hide the transfer cost paid to Brazilian club Santos for Neymar.

Last month, Bartomeu announced the club would hold early elections this summer. He said he planned to run for another term.

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