A Barcelona court left singer Shakira a step away from trial on Thursday, assessing whether there was sufficient evidence that she swindled the treasury of 14.5 million euros by pretending not to live in Spain and hiding her earnings through a corporate network based in tax havens. in the period from 2012 to 2014. Barring a last-minute deal with prosecutors, which is common in tax fraud cases, the singer will sit in the dock.
In the car, the magistrates of the 10th section of the Barcelona Court rejected the singer’s appeal and approved the decision of the investigating judge Esplugues de Llobregat to put her in the dock. The judges believe that it is clear from the artist’s own statement during the investigation phase that she knew that she physically did not have to stay in Spain for more than 183 days in order to be able to pay taxes abroad, but nevertheless she spent more time. in Barcelona without fulfilling their tax obligations.
The criminal trial is based on a prosecutor’s complaint that accuses the Colombian artist of six crimes against the state treasury, which has already paid the 14.5 million that the tax office demanded, plus another three million in interest for alleged tax fraud. committed between 2012 and 2014. Now it’s up to the Ministry of Defense to charge the singer.
Shakira alleged that the Treasury used “circumstantial” evidence such as Instagram or press photos to place her in Spain for more than 183 days, and that in fact she maintained her tax residency in the Bahamas throughout the years under investigation. And the singer added that when she settled in the Bahamas, she could not have known that “someday, having contact” with Spain, there would be a tax “interpretation” problem.
The judges discard three of the defense’s arguments in an accurate analysis of Shakira’s days in Spain or even at the “farmhouse” in Perpignan, France. The togados’ conclusion is clear: photographs taken by the Ministry of Finance from the singer’s social networks, bills in hairdressers and shopping centers or plane tickets are “appropriate means” to prove the singer’s presence in Spain.
The court also considers that the investigating judge was “rational” in concluding that a few episodes from Shakira’s life between 2012 and 2014 were sufficient to determine her “actual stay of more than 183 days” in Spain, thereby not fulfilling her payment obligation. taxes in our country.
Among the episodes, high-profile moments stand out, such as buying a house in Barcelona, renting a recording studio in the Catalan capital, her family’s arrival in Barcelona, the city where the singer also monitored her pregnancy. But that’s not all: shopping for Shakira and her assistants in the English court of Diagonal, canteens, taxis or car rentals, or training in Barcelona in 2014 for her youngest son.
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