Pop star Shakira is charged with tax evasion in Spain valued at £13 MILLION between 2012 and 2014
- Shakira registered herself for tax in the Bahamas between 2012 and 2014
- The 41-year-old Colombian allegedly defrauded Spanish taxman of £13million
- State prosecutors, who have investigated for a year, filed charges today
Pop singer Shakira has been charged with tax evasion by Spanish state lawyers.
The 41-year-old Colombian allegedly defrauded the Spanish taxman out of £13million by registering herself in the Bahamas, which has zero income tax, between 2012 and 2014.
State prosecutors, who have spent the past year investigating Shakira, filed charges today.
Finances: Pop star Shakira has been formally accused by Spanish state prosecutors of a multi-million pound tax fraud
Shakira moved to Barcelona after starting a relationship with Barcelona FC star Gerard Pique (pictured together) in 2011 – but only registered for tax there in 2015
Lawyers acting for the singer are expected to try to settle the case before deciding whether to try to reach a pre-trial settlement if the request is rejected.
Prosecutors allege the performer registered for tax in the Bahamas as part of a plan to deliberately avoid meeting her tax obligations in Spain.
Shakira moved to Barcelona after starting a relationship with Barcelona FC star Gerard Pique in 2011 – but only registered for tax there in 2015.
Dispute: The Colombian, 41, will have to defend herself against claims she defrauded the Spanish taxman out of nearly 15million euros over three years
Official residents in Spain pay Spanish taxes on their worldwide income.
People who spend more than 183 days in a given calendar year in the country are considered Spanish residents for tax purposes.
Tax inspectors visited Shakira’s favourite hairdressers in Barcelona and checked her social media to try to show she spent most of the three years in Spain.
Tax evasion inquiry: Tax inspectors spent more than a year checking up on Shakira to show she spent most of the three years in dispute in Spain
Spanish media said prosecutors’ criminal complaint offered no proof the Hips Don’t Lie Singer had spent enough time in the country to be considered a tax resident.
But it said the rest of the time she spent out of Spain were ‘sporadic absences’ resulting from work commitments, an argument the singer’s defence lawyers disagree with and are set to fight.
A spokesman for the singer said she did not owe the Spanish taxman any money and insisted she had followed the advice of her financial advisors.
He insisted she was ready to co-operate to ‘resolve the differences in criteria.’
Registered: The Barcelona-based singer, previously tax resident in the Bahamas, registered as a full tax resident in Spain in 2015
Shakira was named in the recent Paradise Papers scandal after it was revealed late last year she transferred £30million in musical rights to an offshore firm in Malta.
Her lawyer Ezequiel Camerini told Spanish news website El Confidencial the singer lived in Barcelona – but quoted him as justifying her links to a tax haven on the basis that ‘as an international artist, she had lived in several places in the course of her professional life, acting in total accordance with the laws of all the jurisdictions she resides in.’
Shakira, whose full name is Shakira Isabel Mebarak Ripoll, separated from former Argentinian president’s son Antonio de la Rua in August 2010 before starting a relationship with Gerard Pique in 2011.
They have two children Milan, five, and Sasha, four.