Ronaldinho opens up on arrest in fake passport case
Former Brazilian football superstar Ronaldinho said that his arrest and subsequent house arrest in Paraguay for using a false passport was difficult to handle. Ronaldinho and his brother Roberto de Assis Moreira were accused of entering Paraguay in possession of false passports. The former Barcelona and Milan forward has denied accusations. Here's more on what Ronaldinho had to say.
"I would never have imagined myself in such a situation," Ronaldinho said in an interview with the Paraguayan newspaper ABC. "I was completely caught off guard when I found out that these passports were not valid," Ronaldinho said in his first public statement since his arrest two days after arriving in Asuncion at the beginning of March.
After more than a month behind bars, Ronaldinho and his brother paid bail of $1.6 million. Since April 7 the two have been under house arrest at the Palmaroga Hotel in the Paraguayan capital. "We came to participate in the launch of an online casino and the publication of my autobiography with the company in charge of exploiting the rights for Paraguay," he said.
Football legend and World Cup winner Diego Maradona came out in support of Ronaldinho and said the incident made him sad. "What happened to Ronaldinho made me sad," Maradona told newspaper El Dia. "He's not a criminal, he only went to work. His only mistake is being an idol, it seems. He's my friend and I back him to the death."
Ronaldinho revealed what he wants to do after being freed. "The first thing I would do once I leave Paraguay is to go and give my mother a hug and then digest what this situation has generated," said Ronaldinho, who turned 40 on March 21.