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Lionel Messi’s brother handed two-and-a-half-year suspended prison sentence – Nigeria News

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Lionel Messi’s brother, Matias, who was found guilty of possessing an illegal firearm, has been handed a two-and-a-half-year suspended prison sentence.

Lionel Messi's brother handed two-and-a-half-year suspended prison sentence lailasnews

The footballer’s older brother, who was found with the illegal firearm in a blood-stained boat which he crashed in the Parana River, received a two-and-a-half year prison sentence on Thursday August 16th but instead of going to jail, he will undertake community service.

Lionel Messi's brother handed two-and-a-half-year suspended prison sentence lailasnews 2

It was gathered that Lionel Messi’s brother who was initially held under preventive arrest and later released while he recovered from a fractured jaw and other injuries in the Santa Fe province of Argentina, was handed the community service option through a deal with investigating prosecutors.

It also emerged that under Argentinian law, Messi’s brother could have be sentenced to up to eight and a half years in prison if convicted. The minimum prison sentence he could have face for an illegal firearms conviction, would be three and a half years according to local reports.

Matias’ lawyer Ignacio Carbone had also initially insisted he checked himself into hospital after injuring himself when he hit a sandbank – and has suggested the gun found on the boat could have been planted by cops.

Lionel Messi's brother handed two-and-a-half-year suspended prison sentence lailasnews 1

Matias who has been linked with known criminals in the past, was held for 16 hours in a prison cell for in 2015 after officers found an an unlicensed 22-caliber gun in his car. He was also arrested in 2008 for allegedly having a loaded gun in his belt.

Matias is the middle brother in the Messi family, with Rodrigo aged 38 and Lionel aged 31. The trio also have a younger sister, 31, called Maria.  Matias and Rodrigo helped the Argentina international build up a huge passion for football by playing constantly together when they were younger.

Lionel Messi’s brother alongside his mother, Celia María Cuccittini – helps manage the Barcelona forward’s charitable organisation, the Leo Messi Foundation.

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