On Wednesday, Mexico's national soccer team captain Rafael Márquez denied allegations about having ties to a drug cartel.
The legendary soccer star was one of 22 people accused by the U.S. Treasury Department of being connected to alleged drug trafficker Raul Flores Hernández. The U.S. agency says Márquez served as a "front person" for the cartel through his soccer school. According to The New York Times, the supposed relationship between Márquez and the Flores Hernández has been 20 years in the making.
Márquez did not attend his club soccer practice on Wednesday, but released a statement saying: "I categorically deny any kind of relation to this organization. Today is my most difficult match. I will try to clear all of this up."
There are 43 organizations that will be sanctioned for having ties to the cartel.
The athletic father of two isn't the only well-known figure accused of money laundering. Mexican singer, Latin Grammy nominee and Billboard award winner, Julio César Álvarez (aka Julion Alvarez) is also on the list. He posted a video negating both his and Márquez's involvement.
Pending further investigation, all of Márquez's U.S. assets will be frozen.
The 38-year-old plays for the Mexican club Atlas and the Mexico national team and has represented Mexico in four World Cup tournaments. There's no word on how this news will affect his position on either team and any of his endorsement deals.