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Real Madrid's Luka Modric appears in court in tax fraud case

Luka Modric is being investigated for tax fraud in Spain.

MADRID -- Real Madrid midfielder Luka Modric appeared in court on Tuesday in a tax fraud case.

Officials said Modric was in court for about 10 minutes along with his wife and lawyer. The player's wife, Vadja, is also being accused of tax irregularities.

Spanish prosecutors have accused the Croatian midfielder of defrauding tax authorities of €870,728 in 2013 and 2014.

Local newspaper El Mundo said Modric has already paid nearly €1 million to tax authorities to try to reach a settlement even though the player has denied any wrongdoing.

Court and tax officials say they cannot confirm or deny the payment. Details of Modric's court appearance have not been released.

Several other players have been targeted by Spanish tax authorities recently, including Lionel Messi who two years ago was found guilty -- along with his father -- for defrauding €4.1 million from income made from image rights.

Other players investigated include Cristiano Ronaldo, Marcelo, Ricardo Carvalho, Angel Di Maria, Javier Mascherano, Radamel Falcao and Fabio Coentrao.

Ronaldo is still contesting his case and could be called to appear in front of a judge again later in 2018.

Former Real Madrid coach Jose Mourinho, currently at Manchester United, is also being investigated.

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