ASUNCION, March 5 (Reuters) - Former Barcelona and Brazil striker Ronaldinho Gaucho is being investigated by Paraguayan authorities after arriving in the country with what police said was a “presumably adulterated Paraguayan passport.”
Ronaldinho and his brother and business manager Roberto de Assis were both questioned by law enforcement officials in their hotel room on the outskirts of Asuncion on Wednesday and have been summoned to appear on Thursday for further questioning, police said in a statement.
The public prosecutor’s office, who collaborated with the police in their investigation, said their cell phones and passports were seized.
“The authenticity of the documents is being checked as is the dates they were stamped,” the public prosecutor’s office said.
Reuters has contacted Assis to request comment on the allegations.
Both men were allowed to remain overnight in their presidential suite at the country club where they were staying, the public prosecutor’s office said, while police added that the investigation is ongoing.
The brothers were invited to Paraguay by a local casino owner and had arrived on Wednesday to take part in a soccer clinic for children and a book launch.
The former Gremio, Flamengo and Paris St Germain forward last played professionally in 2015.
Ronaldinho, 39, was the best player in the world at his peak in the early part of this century.
He was named FIFA World Player of the year in 2004 and 2005 and won the World Cup with Brazil in 2002 and the Champions League with Barcelona in 2006. (Writing by Andrew Downie Editing by Toby Davis)