Shakira Appears Before Spanish Court Over Tax Evasion Charges

Uh oh!

According to Spanish news channel 24 Horas, Shakira appeared before a judge on Thursday over tax evasion allegations which she was charged with in December.

As we previously reported in December, Spanish prosecutors charged the 42-year-old with tax evasion after nearly a year of investigation, apparently focused on where the songstress’ official place of residence was during the years in question.

The investigation allegedly revealed she skipped out on paying more than $16 million in taxes between 2012 and 2014, when she was officially listed as a resident of The Bahamas.

However, Spanish authorities are alleging she actually spent the bulk of those years with her soccer player beau Gerard Piqué and their family in Spain.

When charges were first brought against the pop star, an insider noted insider noted (below):

“ has always complied with all of her tax obligations… she became a citizen after she spent more than 183 days in Spain in a fiscal year. She took the initiative to declare herself a tax resident in Spain and pay taxes in this country… Shakira has already paid the monies that are allegedly deemed owed by the Tax Agency and, therefore, currently owes nothing to the Spanish state.”

Today, the Hips Don’t Lie singer testified before a judge, saying she currently has no debts to the tax agency and that she began living in Spain in 2015, 24 Horas reported.

If found guilty of the six counts of fraud, she could face a jail sentence, and would be required to pay taxes on her worldwide income to the Spanish tax authority from the time period in question.

The mother-of-two’s PR firm said in a statement (below) on Thursday according to reports:

“Shakira has always, including in the period between 2011 and 2014, met her tax obligations in every country she has worked in. As soon as she was informed of the amount that according to Spain’s Tax Office she should pay… Shakira paid that amount in its entirety.”

Billboard writes that the prosecution alleges she pretended to live abroad while really settling down with her partner in Barcelona. Furthermore, she is accused of hiding her earnings in tax havens using shelter companies, according to court documents.

The investigation utilized paparazzi photos, tour schedules, and social media to track Shakira’s exact whereabouts from 2012 to 2014, ultimately finding that she spent 243 days in Spain in 2012, 212 days in 2013 and 244 days in 2014. Spanish tax law indicates that individuals who spend more than 183 days in the country are deemed residents and must pay taxes there.

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