A nurse looking after Diego Maradona admitted she had lied about giving the football legend a check-up on the day he died of a heart attack.
The revelation has added to a growing number of riddles surrounding the Argentinian ace’s final hours – including claims his life could have been saved.
There are further claims that health chiefs feared the star may have been murdered and likened his death to a famous Argentinian mystery.
And we can reveal Maradona’s estate is set to become the centre of a huge legal battle involving his children, alleged illegitimate kids, an ex-lover and even the Italian government.
Maradona died, aged 60, at his San Andres home near Buenos Aires, on Wednesday morning.
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A team of nurses were looking after him after he underwent an operation earlier this month for a brain blood clot.
In a report for their employer, private medical firm Medidom, the nurse who had been on duty there overnight said at 6.30 am he checked Maradona, who was breathing normally.
The nurse who took over from him that morning said she heard Maradona use the toilet at around 7.30 am but did not enter the football star’s room.
And she claimed she tried to check Maradona’s vital signs at 9.20 am, but the star had refused.
But that report is now at the centre of controversy after the nurse told investigators she did not enter Maradona’s bedroom at all that morning. And she is said to have claimed she was “made to lie” for the report.
Investigators said: “What the witness added...is that she was made to write in a report for Medidom...that she had tried to monitor Maradona’s vital signs when the reality is she let him rest.”
Medidom has not responded to the claims.
The nurse also said she saw Maradona at about noon – when he was dead or near death and gave him heart massage and mouth-to-mouth resuscitation.
It was also reported yesterday that health chiefs told the first doctors to reach Maradona’s house: “Call prosecutors and the police. We don’t want another Garcia Belsunce case.”
They were apparently referring to the unsolved murder of Argentinian sociologist Maria Marta, whose death was initially treated as an accident when her body was found in a bath.
That mystery is now the subject of the Netflix smash hit Carmel: Who Killed Maria Marta?
State prosecutors are now analysing CCTV footage from the estate where Maradona was living and the mobile phones of the nurses looking after him in the hours before his death.
They have already said there is nothing pointing to any criminality and insist everything so far suggests the former Barcelona, Naples and Boca Juniors star died from natural causes.
Initial post-mortem results revealed the recovering cocaine addict and alcoholic had suffered heart failure which caused a blood clot.
But Maradona’s lawyer, Matias Morla, has claimed the star had not received any medical checks in his last 12 hours.
He has also questioned a doctor’s decision to allow Maradona to leave hospital just eight days after his brain surgery.
And he has called for a probe into the emergency response, claiming the first ambulance took more than half an hour to reach the star’s house.
Legal sources insist it arrived in 11 minutes.
Maradona grew up in squalor, barely able to read or write, in the shanty town of Villa Fiorito, on the outskirts of Buenos Aires.
But his life became classic rags to riches story after he made his debut in Argentina’s top flight aged just 15.
Hailed as one of the greatest, if not the greatest, player of all time, he led Argentina to World Cup glory in 1986 after his “Hand of God” game against England in the quarter-finals.
He went on to manage Argentina before joining second division Mexican side Dorados.
His amazing career meant he made millions – but the fighting over his fortune has already begun.
Santiago Lara, 19, who claims he is one of Maradona’s illegitimate sons, is demanding that the football legend’s body be exhumed so DNA tests can be carried out.
His waitress mum, Natalia Garat, who is alleged to have had a seven-year on-off relationship with Maradona, denied her son was a gold digger.
But when we asked if he is planning to launch a financial claim, his lawyer refused to deny it. There could be claims from all of Maradona’s other alleged illegitimate children.
They include Magali Gil, 23, and three others born to two separate mothers in Cuba, where Maradona received drug treatment.
His eight confirmed children – who include Diego Jnr, 34, Dalma, 33, Gianinna, 31, Jana, 24, and Diego Fernando, seven – will also be entitled to part of the fortune.
Dalma and Gianinna’s mum, Claudia Villafane, 58, who was married to Maradona for 19 years, is not entitled to a claim. But his former fiancee Rocio Oliva, 29 – who split with the legend in 2018 after a six-year relationship, – has launched a claim for “financial compensation.”
Her lawyer, Ana Rosenfeld said: “It is sad to think that the day has come when everyone sets their sights on how our beloved Diego’s inheritance will be divided.
“Unfortunately there are people who have a value in life and an added value in their death...
“There are contracts that were signed, like video games or movies, where there may be image rights at stake and those rights keep generating money.” Lawyers now are assessing Maradona’s assets.
He is belived to have owned at least five properties in Buenos Aires.
His fleet of cars includes a Rolls Royce Ghost, a BMW i8 and a Hunta Overcomer Jeep – given to him in his role as honorary president of Belarus club Dynamo Brest.
Maradona had deals with sports brand Puma and video game firms Konami and EA Sports. He is said to have had financial interests in Italy, Cuba and China.
And his collection of football memorabilia – including many of the honours he won during his incredible career – could also be worth millions.
But part of Maradona’s inheritance may go to the Italian Government to pay a multi-million-pound tax-bill he left behind while playing for Napoli.
The footballer had been fighting the bill, estimated to be £5.4million – for decades. And his Italian tax lawyer claimed the hero would have finally been cleared of tax-evasion at a court hearing scheduled for next year.
Angelo Pisani said: “No criminal, even a Mafioso, was ever treated this badly. Maradona was not a tax evader or criminal. He denounced crime in football and the wider world.”