Barcelona star Lionel Messi’s brother is facing a new court probe after police discovered a gun and blood all over a boat he claimed to have had an accident in.
Matias Messi, 35, told a security guard when he reached a private fishing club near his home in Argentina yesterday that he had cut his face after colliding with a sandbank.
But after prosecutors discovered a handgun in the blood-spattered vessel, they ordered police to track him down so he could be formally questioned.
He is now said to be facing arrest after officers failed to locate him.
Argentinian news publications published pictures of the blood-covered motor boat, which was left at a fishing club in the town of Fighiera, a 20-minute drive from Matias’s home on a private estate in General Lagos.
Prosecutor Jose Luis Caterina applied for an arrest warrant for Matias after a second attempt to locate him failed following the discovery of the .380 handgun.
In a statement released today his family angrily denied that he had a firearm in the boat.
They added that Matias had hurt himself in an accident and claimed the reason he had not been seen since his boat crash was because he was in hospital pending an operation.
They said he had suffered injuries including a broken jaw and facial cuts after crashing against the windscreen of his boat when it hit a sandbank.
For now Matias had been advised not to make a statement on medical advice, the Messi family statement said.
The name of the hospital he is in has not been revealed.