BUENOS AIRES, April 7 ― Diego Maradona's former lawyer has hit back at the late Argentine football legend's daughters after his offices were raided by anti-fraud police, accusing them of abandoning their father.
Matias Morla and two of Maradona's daughters, Dalma and Gianinna, are embroiled in an inheritance dispute over Maradona's brand and image rights.
“Maradona was abandoned, that's clear. He died alone, apart from the sisters with whom he spoke every day and (his ex-girlfriend) Veronica Ojeda, who went to see him with Dieguito Fernando, his son,” Morla told America TV on Monday night.
Morla's offices were raided on Monday as part of an investigation launched after Dalma and Gianinna made a complaint against the lawyer on March 12 for fraudulent administration and fraud.
The two daughters asked for an investigation into the use of the Maradona brand by a company called Sattvica that is owned by Morla.
They accused Morla of “betrayal, dishonesty and abuse” in his management of Maradona's brand and image rights after the star's death.
Sattvica is currently barred from using the brand.
But Morla fired back at his accusers, suggesting the issue was really about money.
“Diego said: 'The Maradona brand will look after my sisters, the image will look after my heirs',” said Morla, adding that the 1986 World Cup winning captain submitted a signed document to that effect with a Dubai court in 2015 or 2016.
Dalma and Gianinna “don't like me because in 2014 we took away their credit cards,” added Morla, who has locked horns with the two daughters for years.
Maradona died of a heart attack on November 25 aged 60 while recovering from an operation to remove a blood clot from his head.
In a separate investigation, authorities are looking into the health treatment he received to determine whether there was any neglect or malpractice.
Maradona had battled cocaine and alcohol addictions during his life.
He was suffering from liver, kidney and cardiovascular disorders when he died.
Maradona is an idol to millions of Argentines after he inspired the South American country to only their second World Cup triumph in 1986.
An attacking midfielder who spent two years with Spanish giants Barcelona, he is also loved in Naples where he helped Napoli win the only two Serie A titles in their history. ― AFP