Manchester United News: Star midfielder could face four-year jail sentence for match-fixing

Manchester United have been hit by a new setback on Monday after it emerged that La Liga prosecutors have filed an indictment to hand their star midfielder with a four-year sentence over an alleged match-fixing scandal.

Speaking on the matter a few weeks back, Herrera stated, “As I stated back in 2014 when this issue was raised, I have never had, and never will have, anything to do with manipulating match results.

“If I am ever called to testify in a judicial hearing, I will be delighted to attend as my conscience is totally clear.

“I love football and I believe in fair play – both on and off the pitch.”

The crux of the matter

The Spanish state prosecutors had earlier demanded a two-year prison sentence for the Spaniard to go with a six-month ban from football. 35 other footballers have also been indicted in the same case.

A two-year prison sentence is normally suspended for first-time offenders. That would mean that Herrera is more likely to escape a jail sentence for his involvement in the corruption charges.
However, with La Liga looking to slap him with a four-year sentence, thinks might just get tricky.

The prosecutors of Spain top league are also looking to hit Herrera and the others with a six-year worldwide football ban – which would mean an end to their footballing days.

The trial on the sports corruptions charges is expected to take place at the end of this year or the beginning of next year.

The game and what happened

The game ended in question, a 2-1 win for Herrera’s former team Real Zaragoza over Levante resulted in the relegation of Deportivo La Coruna – who are also expected to file an indictment alongside La Liga regarding the matter.

The club and La Liga will be prosecuting the players in the same court room as part of cases that will run parallel to the prosecution by the state. It is believed that it is customary of the lawyer leading parallel prosecutions to demand stiffer punishments that the state.

According to Spanish newspaper Las Provincias, the La Liga lawyers will also be looking to hit the players with fines of €2.9million (£2.56m) each – which is also much more than the £1.7m fines that the state is looking from the footballers if convicted

The other footballers facing trial along with Herrera on a charge of sports corruption include Atletico Madrid star Gabi, former Middlesborough striker Cristhian Stuani and Javi Venta, who ended his career at Brentford.

Also Read: La Liga president wants to ban Barcelona star for 'cheating'

Zaragoza's then-manager Javier Aguirre and ex-owner Agapito Iglesias are also being prosecuted.

According to the state prosecutors, Levante had agreed to lose the match against Zaragoza in exchange for a payment of €965,000 (£852,000).

After being investigated at length a few years back, the case was re-opened earlier this year after three Valencia-based judges found irregularities in the statements made by the accused players.

All the indicted players have denied any wrongdoing regarding the matter.

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