The Colombian singer Shakira will have to sit on the bench to answer for six crimes against the Spanish Public Treasury, for which the Prosecutor’s Office asks her for a total of eight years and two months in prison and a fine of 23.8 million euros.
A judge agreed on Tuesday to open the oral trial of the artist so that she can be tried at the Barcelona Court, accused of defrauding 14.5 million euros between 2012 and 2014, pretending that she did not reside in Spain.
Shakira (Barranquilla, Colombia, 1977) has already paid the amount that the Spanish Tax Agency demanded of her – plus another three million euros in interest –, which does not prevent her from having to sit on the bench at the request of the Prosecutor’s Office.
Last May, the Barcelona Court endorsed the judge’s decision to send the Colombian singer to trial, given the indications that she resided in Spain “regularly” between 2012 and 2014: first in the Catalan capital and later in a house in the nearby town of Esplugues de Llobregat that he bought with his ex-partner, the FC Barcelona footballer Gerard Piqué, through a company.
According to the public ministry, that house was the family home of the artist, whose stays outside Spain during that time were for “professional reasons, with a very short duration”, except for the season in which she participated in the American program ” The Voice» (61 days in 2012, 118 in 2013 and 117 in 2014).
The accusation maintains that, having resided in Spain for more than 183 days a year, Shakira “was a tax resident in Spain and had the obligation to pay taxes on all of her worldwide income”, both with respect to IRPF (Income Tax on Individuals) as well as wealth tax.
To avoid doing so, according to the Prosecutor’s Office, Shakira “used a corporate network”, based in the British Virgin Islands, Cayman Islands, Malta, Panama and Luxembourg, in order to hide her income and assets.
The Prosecutor’s Office maintains that the singer’s “plan” consisted of her companies formally appearing as holders of the income, while she only appeared “last and some companies located in tax havens” to which the majority went. of your income.
Likewise, advised by several professionals, in 2008, 2012 and 2013 the singer reached agreements with the Luxembourg tax authorities, the so-called Tax Ruling, “to set specific and privileged tax conditions” in these years, maintains the Public Ministry Spanish.
These agreements, according to the Prosecutor’s Office, gave rise to a “minimum tax tax”, of only 2% of the gross income generated, allowing the majority of their income to be transferred to companies or accounts of the singer.
The last Tax Ruling agreements were signed when he was already living regularly in Spain, but “at no time did he inform the Spanish tax authorities of said agreements,” says the Public Ministry.
The singer’s legal team has had several talks with the accusations to reach an agreement, but Shakira rejected the offers.