Ronaldinho released from jail after paying $1.6 million bail, he is now under house arrest


Ronaldinho has been released from a high-security jail in Paraguay and placed under house arrest while he is investigated over a fake passport.

The former Barcelona star, who won the World Cup with Brazil in 2002, has been ordered to serve house arrest at the luxury Palmaroga hotel in Asuncion after more than a month behind bars.

Ronaldinho and his brother Roberto de Assis have also been told to pay bail of around £650,000 each, bringing the total to £1,300,000 or US$1,600,000.

Retired ace Ronaldinho, a former FIFA player of the year who also played for AC Milan, Paris-Saint Germain and clubs in his homeland, was jailed on March 6 after entering Paraguay with a false passport.

He told local authorities in a hearing that the document was a gift from a Brazilian businessman, Wilmondes Sousa Liria, who was also jailed.

When issuing the ruling, Judge Gustavo Amarilla said: “I decided to put them in house arrest because the investigation is now well advanced, differently from the situation one month ago.”

Ronaldinho, 40, had his Brazilian passport seized at home due to an investigation into alleged environmental crimes, but the document was returned to him in September.

One month later he played in a friendly in Israel.

If convicted, Ronaldinho could spend up to five years in jail. Fourteen people are being investigated in the case.

Ronaldinho travelled to Paraguay to promote his autobiography. He was jailed in an improvised penitentiary in the south of Asuncion, which is used for 150 dangerous criminals, including convicts of drug dealing, corruption and rape.

During his stay he played football with inmates and took pictures with them that were shared on social media.

Ronaldino was recently voted the second best Barcelona player of all time, behind Diego Maradona, in a poll of the club’s fans.

The versatile star, who could play across the forward line or as an attacking midfielder, played for Barca from 2003 to 2008, when he joined AC Milan.

He was named FIFA World Player of the Year in 2004 and 2005.

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