POLICE have arrested a man suspected of stealing £30,000 from Neymar.
The 20-year-old has been detained in the Brazilian city of Sao Paulo on suspicion of targeting the striker and other celebrities through fraudulent instant bank transfers known in Neymar’s homeland as PIX .
Police say more than £30,000 was taken from the Paris Saint-Germain star in small amounts in various online transactions, although the targeted account is believed to be managed by Neymar’s father.
Sao Paulo leader Fabio Pinheiro Lopes told local media: “He used a colleague’s login and allegedly started stealing small amounts of money from the accounts of famous people with high purchasing power.
“These people didn’t realize it at all. He made one for £1,400, another for £2,800 and then £7,000.
“Neymar’s case has a particularity because the person who transferred the money was a bank employee, someone who was employed by an outsourced company hired by the bank.”
The financial institution was not named.
Other arrests have not been ruled out, but the missing money has already been returned.
Neymar, believed to be paid £26million a year by PSG, has yet to make an official comment.
Last year it emerged that a travel agent cheated Cristiano Ronaldo out of nearly £250,000.
The 53-year-old, named in Portugal as Maria Silva, also scammed football star super-agent Jorge Mendes for over £14,000 and £1,500 from former Manchester United winger Nani .
His misdeed resulted in a four-year suspended prison sentence in a court in Porto.
Respected Portuguese daily Jornal de Noticias said Ronaldo, 37, did not have to attend his trial after giving a full confession.
The never-before-seen scandal was laid bare by Jornal de Noticias in an expose on Silva’s breach of the trust Ronaldo had placed in her by giving her credit card details and PINs.
The newspaper said the £245,770 he had lost corresponded to around 200 trips he had never made between Portugal and other European countries as well as between Europe, Africa and the States -United.
Silva allegedly committed the fraud by asking customers to transfer money for the trip she had arranged for them to her personal account instead of the business account of the travel agency she worked for.
She then billed those trips to the accounts of victims like Cristiano Ronaldo, who had given her a ‘virtual’ credit card and PIN, to ‘fill the hole’ in her company’s accounts,
She used the same tactic to scam Jorge Mendes and his sports agency Gestifute for £36,000 and former Portsmouth and Everton footballer Manuel Fernandes for £2,440.