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France ministry searched in Neymar PSG transfer probe: source

The French finance and economy ministry was searched earlier this week as part of a probe into the 2017 transfer of Brazil football superstar Neymar to Paris Saint-Germain, a source said on Thursday.

Officers with anti-corruption units carried out the searches on Monday, amid suspicions that PSG may have received favourable tax treatment as part of the transfer, the source said.

Neymar joined Qatar-owned Paris Saint-Germain from Barcelona in 2017 for a world-record fee of 222 million euros ($242 million), scoring 118 goals in 173 matches despite a series of injuries.

Last year he left the French club for Saudi Al-Hilal, the latest world-famous footballer snapped up by the big-spending Saudi Pro League.

He will earn 100 million euros a season in Saudi Arabia, according to a source close to the negotiations, while PSG will pocket 100 million euros in the deal.

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