According to Shakira’s legal team, she is going to court to face charges of tax evasion, and her counsel have taken aim at the Spanish government.
Accused of tax evasion in Spain between 2012 and 2014, the Hips Don’t Lie singer Shakira, 45, faces an eight-year prison sentence and a multi-million-euro punishment on Friday, according to Spanish authorities.
Authorities in Spain claim that Shakira owes the country 14.5 million euros in back taxes. The actress has responded by claiming that she had legal residency in the Bahamas throughout the relevant time period, which has no income tax.
The singer, according to a spokesman, will fight for an undiluted acquittal after rejecting a plea bargain.
An official from PriceWaterhouseCoopers informed the U.K. tabloid Metro that Shakira has always cooperated and complied with the law, exhibiting excellent conduct as an individual and a taxpayer and dutifully followed their advice.
“Unfortunately, the Spanish Tax Office, which loses one out of every two lawsuits against its taxpayers, continues to violate her rights and pursue yet another bogus action. ‘Shakira is convinced that her innocence will be proven at trial,’ she says.
Prosecutors offered Shakira a bargain that has not been made public. No date for the trial has yet been set.
That news was first reported in October, when it emerged that the Spanish Treasury was going to reimburse Shakira’s taxes following a court decision.
Shakira’s agents informed Newsweek that she will be refunded for “a series of surcharges that the Tax Agency improperly collected,” but they did not say how much or when she will be reimbursed.
Courts have ruled in favor of Shakira and ordered the Tax Agency to restore the money she was forced to pay unfairly because of the issue with the collection of taxes, a statement shared with Newsweek stated.
Legal counsel “reiterates its full faith in the justice system,” according to the statement. According to the author, “This is an example of the fact that courts, more often than we may think, go against the standards of the Administration, even going so far as to annul settlements made erroneously.”
A tax evasion investigation by the Spanish government is still ongoing, although Shakira says that during the years in issue she only visited Spain “sporadically.”