Former Aston Villa striker John Carew handed jail sentence for tax fraud

Former Aston Villa striker John Carew has been sentenced to 14 months in prison in his native Norway after being found guilty of tax fraud.

The towering target man spent four years with Villa between 2007 and 2011 before brief spells with Stoke City and West Ham brought an end to his career 12 months later, leaving him with 38 goals in 123 Premier League games.

Since retiring, Carew has spent very little time in Norway, with prosecutors working out he was in his homeland for just 230 days between 2014 and 2019, but the country's financial laws means that was long enough for him to need to pay tax.

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Accused of failing to pay over £450,000 in tax, local reports state that Carew has been found guilty and hit with a prison sentence of 14 months, alongside a £45,000 fine.

The judge in the case deemed that Carew did not intentionally defraud the system but decided that the former striker should have known the rules, saving him from a lengthier potential sentence.

Carew has long admitted the charges but claimed not to have understood the rules, arguing that he received poor tax advice from former financial advisor Per A. Flod.

"This shows that John Carew is believed on all counts," a statement from defence lawyer Berit Reiss-Andersen read. "The court has concluded that he has acted grossly negligently, but not with intent. We have claimed this all along, and Carew has been clear that he has wanted to make amends."

Carew has the option to appeal the sentence.

Source : 90min