International pop sensation Shakira has avoided jail time by agreeing to a settlement with Barcelona prosecutors about her tax fraud case.
Six accusations of failing to pay 14.5 million euros ($15.8 million) in taxes to the Spanish government between 2012 and 2014 were brought against the Colombian singer. She accepted the bargain that resulted in a three-year suspended sentence and a significantly lower fine on Monday, the opening day of her trial, despite the fact that the prosecution had sought an eight-year prison sentence in addition to a punishment of 24 million euros ($26 million). She still maintains her innocence despite having turned down a plea agreement earlier in the year.
While I vowed to defend the truth in a trial that my lawyers were certain would have headed in my favor, the singer said in a statement obtained by News Digital, I have made the choice to finally settle this issue with the best interest of my children at heart, who are unwilling to see their mom give up her personal well-being in this fight.
I have always tried to do the right thing and lead by example throughout my career. That frequently entails going above and beyond in both professional and personal financial decisions to secure the best legal counsel. For example, the “Hips Don’t Lie” singer consulted PricewaterhouseCoopers International Limited, one of the world’s leading tax authorities, who gave me advice right away, and Ernst & Young Global Limited after that.
Regretfully, and in spite of these attempts, Spanish tax officials prosecuted a case against me, just as they have done with several high-profile and professional athletes, consuming years at a time all of their resources, including time, energy, and mental clarity.
Shakira must pay taxes in Spain since she lived there for more than half of 2012 and 2014, according to Barcelona prosecutors. The celebrity had earlier filed an appeal against the charges, but in May 2022, a judge denied her request.
Shakira Will Get a Fine
Shakira will get a fine of seven million euros ($7.6 million) as an extra to the suspended three-year term, as per the agreement negotiated. In addition, she will pay a 432,000 euro ($472,000) extra punishment associated with the sentencing.
I need to put the worry and emotional strain of the previous few years behind me and concentrate on the things I love, which are my children, and the chances I have ahead of me in my profession, which include my new album and my impending world tour, both of which I am really looking forward to. She continued, I have the utmost respect for those who have persevered against these injustices, but for me, today, victory means having more time for my family and my work.
In the next few weeks, nearly 100 witnesses would have testified in the trial if an agreement had not been struck.
Shakira continues to be charged with individual tax evasion cases based on her income in 2018. She was accused of failing to pay the Spanish government 6.7 million euros ($7.1 million) in September, when the allegations were first brought.
She is accused by the prosecution of evading tax payments by utilizing an offshore business with its headquarters in a tax haven. Prior to this, her legal team informed News Digital that, with regard to the complaint for the 2018 fiscal year, “no notice” of the filing had “been obtained in Miami, the singer’s official address.”
Shakira spent a number of years living in Spain, while her ex-partner Gerard Piqué was a player for FC Barcelona. Following their breakup, the couple engaged in a violent custody dispute. In the end, Shakira relocated to Miami in April with her two sons.