Former Barcelona star and Brazilian national team Ronaldinho Gaúcho and his brother Roberto Assis were arrested by the Paraguayan police on Wednesday night on charges of having entered the country using alleged false passports.
The information was released by ‘La Nación’ and confirmed by GLOBO with the Paraguayan police.
Euclides Acevedo, Paraguay’s interior minister, reported that investigators entered the presidential suite of the Hotel Yacht Golf Club, where Ronaldinho was staying and found two adulterated passports. One was in the name of the ex-player and the other in the name of the brother.
– Let’s enforce the law. We have information that he has adulterated documentation – said the minister in an interview with Radio Ñandutí, from Paraguay. According to the local press, the player was not detained at the airport in order not to create fanfare.
According to the document obtained by the report, Wilmondes Sousa Lira, who reportedly provided the fake passports to Ronaldinho and Assis, is being held. Ronaldinho and his brother are in custody at the hotel and will testify this Thursday at 8 am.
Ronaldinho arrived in Paraguay this Wednesday for the launch of his book “Genius of life” and would participate in the launch of a social program for children organized by the Fraternidade Angelical Foundation.
In 2018, Ronaldinho’s passports were seized until a fine and indemnity were set out in an environmental damage lawsuit. He was convicted of illegally building a pier, with a fishing platform and mooring, on the shore of Lake Guaíba, in Porto Alegre. The structure was assembled without environmental licensing in a Permanent Preservation Area. The fine was over $ 8.5 million.
In September last year, an agreement was made with the Public Ministry and the passports were recovered.
Off the pitch since 2015, Ronaldinho was named last year as a tourism ambassador by President Jair Bolsonaro.