A court in Barcelona has dismissed megastar Shakira’s appeal to have a tax fraud case dismissed.
The latest twist in the long-running sage allows for the trial to go ahead of the 45-year-old Colombian singer´s alleged defrauding of the Spanish tax agency of 14.5 million Euros.
The court rejected an appeal lodged by her and ruled there was sufficient evidence to move ahead with the criminal case in which she is accused by state prosecutors of avoiding income and corporate tax payments between 2012-14.
Shakira is accused of the fraud by declaring her residency outside Spain and using a network of companies based in tax havens when she was in fact legally resident in Spain.
The court upheld an earlier ruling in which Spanish Judge Marco Juberías wrote that there existed ‘sufficient evidence of criminality’ for the case to go to trial.
Shakira has already paid the 14.5 million Euros to the Spanish tax authorities, in addition to 3 million Euros in interest — but that has not dissuaded the Spanish tax authorities to press charges
She denied any wrongdoing when she testified in the original case in June 2019.
Shakira’s publicist released a statement saying that her “conduct on tax matters has always been impeccable in all the countries where she has had to pay taxes, and she has trusted and faithfully followed the recommendations of the best specialists and expert advisors.”
It continued that she will “defend her innocence”.
If convicted the singer faces a possible fine and a prison sentence.