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Wednesday, October 4, 2023

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Singer Shakira To Face Tax Fraud Trial In Spain

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On Tuesday, Spanish authorities cleared the way for prosecutors to pursue further legal action against the “Hips Don’t Lie” singer.

Spanish prosecutors accused the entertainer in 2018 of failing to pay 14.5 million euros ($19.1 million ) in taxes on income earned between 2012 and 2014. Prosecutors are seeking an eight-year prison sentence and a hefty fine if she is found guilty of tax evasion.

Shakira, 45, has repeatedly denied any wrongdoing and rejected a deal with authorities to avoid going to trial. Her public relations firm has said that she has already paid all that she owed and an additional three million euros ($3.7 million) in interest.

The court based in the town of Esplugues de Llobregat, near Barcelona, said that Shakira will face six counts of tax fraud. A trial date has not yet been set, per the outlet, but the star faces a possible eight-year sentence plus a large fine if she is found guilty of not paying taxes from 2012 to 2014.

In July, she rejected a settlement offer in the case, according to Reuters, which would have settled the case out of court.

Shakira has denied any wrongdoing, and her public relations firm maintains that she has paid what she owed plus $3 million in interest.

Spain has cracked down on soccer stars like Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo over the past decade for not paying their full due in taxes. They were found guilty of evasion but both avoided prison time thanks to a provision that allows a judge to waive sentences under two years in length for first-time offenders.

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