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Brazilian soccer striker Neymar fined $3.3 million for building an artificial lake and beaches at his villa

Soccer star striker Brazilian Neymar has receive a fine of 16 million reais ($3.3 million) by a Brazilian prosecutor for building a lake at his villa on the outskirts of Rio de Janeiro without an environmental permit, authorities said on Monday.

Four fines has imposed by the Mangaratiba City Council for “environmental violations in the construction of an artificial lake at the player’s villa,” the council secretariat said in a statement.

“The penalties amount to more than 16 million reais,” the statement said, a sum issued by the prosecutor’s office in Mangaratiba, a tourist area about 130 kilometers (80 miles) from Rio where the Paris Saint-Germain star has his residence.

Among the “dozens of violations” discovered, authorities listed “arbitrary construction of works subject to environmental control”, exploitation and diversion of river water without permission, and “illegal land transportation and cutting of vegetation”.

Neymar have up to 21 days to appeal the sanctions or risk going to jail, the amount of which was initially set at 5 million reais, or nearly $1 million.

On June 22, following complaints based on social media posts, authorities discovered several environmental violations at this luxury resort, where workers were building an artificial lake and beach. Authorities sealed off the site and ordered all activities to stop, but Brazilian media reported that Neymar held a party there and bathed in the lake.

Neymar’s press office in Brazil did not respond to AFP’s request for comment.

Currently recovering from right ankle surgery, Neymar, 31, underwent in Doha in March. Brazilian Neymar have not been playing since February and doubts have arisen about whether he can stay at PSG.

The mansion Mangaratiba was bought by Neymar in 2016. According to Brazilian media, it sits on 10,000 square meters (107,000 square feet) of land and includes a helipad, spa and gym.

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