Grecians land Bergqvist
Sat, 29 Jun 2013 12:24:00
Carlos Tevez risks being handed a suspended prison sentence if he does not fulfil his community service order for motoring offences, celebrity lawyer Nick Freeman has warned.
Tevez was this week sold by Manchester City to Juventus but the Argentina striker, who has signed a three-year deal with the Italian giants, still has to complete the court order he was handed in April for driving while disqualified and without insurance.
Although he has started to fulfil the 250 hours of unpaid work he was ordered to do by Macclesfield Magistrates Court, the vast majority is still outstanding.
Tevez's legal team yesterday confirmed it will ensure the striker
"bides by the rules" but it remains to be seen when he will serve the rest of his punishment with pre-season training at Juventus set to begin on July 12.
Freeman, a lawyer known as 'Mr Loophole' who has represented numerous sporting figures accused of motoring offences, outlined the process and options now facing Tevez and warned that the former City player could yet face a custodial sentence if the matter is not resolved.
Freeman told BBC Radio 5 Live: "He's officially allowed to complete 35 hours a week (of community service). I think the best thing his lawyers could do would be to contact the probation service and implore them to allow him to complete 60 or 70 hours a week.
"Because if he goes back to the judge whenever the date is fixed, which is obviously before July 12, and says 'I haven't done very many' the judge will not be impressed.
"The order would need to be revoked and the judge would re-sentence him and unless he seriously impresses the judge, the judge is not going to look upon him benevolently and the sort of sentence he is likely to receive is one of custody.
"So the onus is really on him to show the judge that he's taken the order responsibly and seriously.
"He might even need to ask Juventus if he can to delay his start of training to be on the July 12, because of course he's only got about two weeks.
"This isn't going to go away."
On what would happen if Tevez did not complete his community service, Freeman said: "What would happen is there would be breach proceedings, they would obviously succeed and eventually there would be a warrant out for his arrest unless he came back to the court and face the music.
"So he has various options, and of course one thing that's going to be vitally important is how long has he known that he might be moving to Juventus because he would have a responsibility to complete the order as quickly as possible and if he's really put this on the backburner then that's something that's going to agitate the judge rather than impress him."
On the possibility of Tevez facing jail in England in the worst-case scenario, Freeman added: "I think if he does as I'm suggesting he will end up with a suspended prison sentence. If he manages to complete the vast majority of hours, the judge may be persuaded to revoke the order and impose a financial penalty in its alternative, but only if there is a very small number of remaining hours."
After three years in the Bhoys hot-seat, which have delivered back-to-back SPL titles and a memorable run through to the last-16 of the UEFA Champions League in 2012/13, Lennon has seen his profile rise considerably.
He was among those believed to be in contention to replace David Moyes at Everton once it emerged that he was to succeed Sir Alex Ferguson at Manchester United, and was again linked with a move to England once Roberto Martinez left Wigan Athletic.
Lennon has, however, returned to pre-season training with Celtic, much to the relief of Brown - a man who feels his manager has not always been given the recognition he deserves for the fine job he has overseen in Glasgow.
He told the Daily Record: "It's great the gaffer, Johan Mjallby and Garry Parker are still here.
"I heard a few things over the summer and I'm not sure what happened. I was just hoping he'd be here when I came back.
"We were struggling at one point as a club and the manager brought back the fighting spirit. He's put belief in myself and the other players.
"He's due a bit more recognition. Everyone thinks it's easy here and we should win the Treble and have a run in the Champions League. But we play 60 or 70 games a season, so to be consistent is difficult."
The Villarreal midfielder has agreed a further year's loan after helping City to a top-10 Premier League finish and Capital One Cup success last term.
De Guzman scored twice in that Wembley win over Bradford, and his performances last season earned him a first international cap for Holland.
Swansea manager Michael Laudrup questioned the club's lack of business earlier in the summer, but news of a deal follows the permanent signings of Jordi Amat and Jose Canas.
Chairman Huw Jenkins said: "Everyone is happy the loan is continuing. Then Jonathan will review his long-term future next summer."
De Guzman spoke warmly of his first year in south Wales in a recent interview.
He said: "We played well in a lot of games. We played good football and it's refreshing playing in a team that has a good football mind.
"I'm very satisfied with what happened. We did very well - we were very creative. We really put Swansea on the map."
Sweden-born Bergqvist moved to England at the age of 10 and came through the youth ranks at Reading and QPR.
The 20-year-old centre-half arrives at St James Park as a free agent following his departure from Aldershot.
City chief executive Julian Tagg said: "We're delighted to have had the opportunity to bring in a young prospect of Doug's calibre.
"Not only does he have exciting potential for the future but he has already played league football and knows what the game is about at a competitive level.
"He is someone we've looked at the possibility of signing before and we're very pleased we have had the opportunity to add him to our ranks."