Portugal's soccer player Cristiano Ronaldo arrives to appear in court on a trial for tax fraud in Madrid, Spain, January 22, 2019. REUTERS/Sergio Perez

MADRID (Reuters) – Portuguese soccer star Cristiano Ronaldo accepted a fine and suspended jail term for tax fraud in Spain on Tuesday, signing a deal to settle a case which will cost him a total of 18.8 million euros ($21.4 million).

The deal was struck at a Madrid-based court by the former Real Madrid star in a case which was constituted due to under-declared tax records between 2010 and 2014 when he was playing and living in Spain.

He was accused of declaring lower earnings from image rights deals and shortchanging the Spanish government by using foreign firms to avoid huge tax payments in Spain.

The Portuguese, 33, maintained his innocence but blamed his advisors.

The five-time Balon D’Or winner was present in court with his fiancee, Georgina Rodriguez, to seal a deal which includes a suspended 23-month jail sentence after finally admitting to the charges of knowingly evading tax.

The deal was struck within minutes of his arrival.

Ronaldo spent nine years successful years with Real Madrid, becoming the club’s highest ever goal scorer.

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