The son of Brazil’s footballing legend, Pele, has handed himself in to complete his 12 years and 10 months sentence for money laundering and drug trafficking.
Pele’s son, Edinho, was a former professional goalkeeper in the 1990s with Santos FC in Brazil, where his father spent all his professional career. And later took a Manager role in a small club in the state of Sao Paulo.
He was first arrested in 2005 over the charges, but appealed; but was however sentenced in 2014 to 33 years, which was later reduced to 12 years and 10 months. Although Edinho denied all the charges.
“A Brazilian court has ruled that Edinho, who was convicted of money laundering and drug trafficking, must begin serving nearly 13 years in prison,” his lawyer said.
His detention and alleged involvement with drug gangs took most people in Brazil by surprise; as even Pele, who went to visit his son several times in jail, was quoted to have said in 2006, “God willing, justice will be done. There is not a shred of evidence against my son.”
“I’m frustrated because I’m being massacred by the legal system,” Edinho had said as he arrived a Police Station in Santos. “I never had any involvement with money laundering.”
Football great, Pele, who retired in 1974 after he won the World Cup in 1958, 1962 and 1970, but made a comeback a year later for New York Cosmos, is acclaimed as the greatest footballer of his generation.
His son, Edinho, who is now 46, was five when he was signed to play for Cosmos and the family moved to New York.
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