Shakira Reaches Deal Over Tax Evasion Case After Risking Eight-Year Sentence And $26 Million Fine
After being initially accused in Spain of failing to pay a couple of million euros in 2018, Shakira has finally reached a deal with the country’s prosecutors to settle a tax fraud case, just as her trial was set to start.
The Colombian musician was expected to face tax fraud allegations amounting to €14.5 million ($15.9 million) in a Barcelona court, the BBC reported.
Spanish prosecutors had originally wanted to jail Shakira for eight years and fine her €23.8 million ($26 million) if she was found guilty.
Nevertheless, the 46-year-old mom-of-two attended court on Monday (November 20) and agreed to pay a fine of 7 million euros ($7.7 million).
Shakira reaches a deal to end a long-running tax fraud dispute in Spain, avoiding trial
Image credits: David Oller/ Getty Images
“I have made the decision to finally resolve this matter with the best interest of my kids at heart,” the singer explained
#BREAKING: Shakira leaves Court after reaching deal with prosecution in tax fraud case
“I felt ready to defend my innocence, but it’s not a triumph if they steal many years of your time,” pop star says
— Catalan News (@catalannews) November 20, 2023
The Hips Don’t Lie singer denied any wrongdoing in the following statement: “Throughout my career, I have always strived to do what’s right and set a positive example for others.
“That often means taking the extra step in business and personal financial decisions to procure the absolute best counsel, including seeking the advice of the world’s preeminent tax authorities PricewaterhouseCoopers International Limited and Ernst & Young Global Limited who have been my advisors during this whole process.
Image credits: World Economic Forum
“Unfortunately, and despite these efforts, tax authorities in Spain pursued a case against me as they have against many professional athletes and other high-profile individuals, draining those people’s energy, time, and tranquility for years at a time.
Image credits: EKATERINA BOLOVTSOVA
“While I was determined to defend my innocence in a trial that my lawyers were confident would have ruled in my favor, I have made the decision to finally resolve this matter with the best interest of my kids at heart who do not want to see their mom sacrifice her personal well-being in this fight.
“I need to move past the stress and emotional toll of the last several years and focus on the things I love – my kids and all the opportunities to come in my career, including my upcoming world tour and my new album, both of which I am extremely excited about.
“I admire tremendously those who have fought these injustices to the end, but for me, today, winning is getting my time back for my kids and my career.”
Shakira was expected to face tax fraud allegations amounting to €14.5 million ($15.9 million) in a Barcelona court
Image credits: shakira
The settlement came after the star was named one of the big winners at the Latin Grammys on the weekend, taking home three awards, Sky News reported.
Last year, she argued that she didn’t qualify as a Spanish resident because she had spent more than 240 days outside of the country while touring the world
Image credits: shakira
Prosecutors in Spain had accused the Latin star of failing to pay €6.7 million (the equivalent of $7.1 million) in 2018.
The state alleged that Shakira didn’t declare millions in advance payments for her El Dorado World Tour and other sources of income generated during that year.
Though the investigation was opened in July 2023, it was only revealed in September in an Associated Press report.
Barcelona prosecutors accused her of using an offshore holding company based in a tax haven to avoid paying taxes on her 2018 income.
This was the second fiscal misconduct allegation that the singer has faced.
Shakira was then living in Barcelona with her former husband, retired football player Gerard Piqué, and their two sons
Image credits: 3gerardpique
Shakira, now a Miami resident, was then living in Barcelona with her former husband, retired football player Gerard Piqué, and their two sons.
Still, the pop star revealed in a 2022 interview with Elle magazine that she didn’t “qualify as a Spanish resident” because she was traveling for most of the year.
“While Gerard and I were dating, I was on a world tour,” Shakira told Elle.
She continued: “I spent more than 240 days outside of Spain, so there was no way I qualified as a resident.
“The Spanish tax authorities saw that I was dating a Spanish citizen and started to salivate.”