Shakira’s lawyers blast Spanish prosecutors after the singer ‘learned of new tax fraud probe through the media’

Shakira’s lawyers have slammed Spanish prosecutors after the singer allegedly found out about a new tax fraud lawsuit against her ‘through the media’ and insist she has ‘always acted by the law’.


Earlier today,  a court in Spain said the 46-year-old Colombian singer is facing a tax fraud probe.

Her legal team has now responded, saying she has so far not received ‘any formal notification’ of the investigation over her 2018 tax affairs.

The ‘Hips Don’t Lie’ singer is already due to face trial over separate allegations towards the end of the year, in another case relating to over 14.5 million euros (£ 12.5 million) in back taxes owed between 2012 and 2014.

If the new probe is based on similar earnings, she is facing another potential multi-million-pound tax case.

In the 2012-2014 case, the prosecutor is seeking up to an eight-year prison term for the Colombian star, whose full name is Shakira Isabel Mebarak.

Shakira has denied any wrongdoing and insisted she will fight the accusations levied against her in court instead of seeking a last-minute deal with Spanish state prosecutors.

The new probe will be conducted by a judge at a court in Esplugues de Llobregat, the same that launched the earlier investigation which resulted in the artist being ordered to stand trial.

Shakira’s legal advisors said in a statement this afternoon: ‘Shakira has not received any formal notification of the Prosecutor’s complaint that has been, according to the media, filed for the fiscal year 2018.

‘Once again, as has been the case for the past several years, it is through the media that the singer has found out about the filing of this lawsuit, proving the public and reputational pressure to which she is being subjected.’

They said they would not make any comments ‘until the notification reaches them through the official and legally established channels’.

They added: ‘As it is publicly known, and as the Spanish Treasury was officially notified, Shakira is now living in Miami, so she must be notified personally at her new address in strict accordance with the provisions of the Law.

‘As she has already affirmed on numerous occasions, Shakira defends having always acted by the law and under the advice of the best tax experts.

‘She is now focused on her life as an artist in Miami and is confident that there will be a favorable resolution of her tax issues.’

Officials today confirmed reports of the new probe, which will put Shakira under the spotlight once again.

A spokesman for Catalonia’s High Court of Justice said: ‘Court of Instruction Number 2 in Esplugues de Llobregat has opened a procedure following a complaint presented by prosecutors against the singer Shakira for two suspected tax crimes related to income tax and wealth tax for the Spanish tax year of 2018.’

The prosecutor did not immediately respond to a request for comment on the new case.

Before leaving Barcelona for Miami at the start of April, Shakira delivered a stinging attack on Spanish tax authorities after it emerged she would be put on trial over the alleged offenses committed between 2012 and 2014.

She claimed she was being persecuted and accused the Spanish Treasury of using ‘unacceptable methods to damage her reputation and force her to come to a settlement agreement’.

She insisted she had no intention of making any last-minute plea bargain deals and would go to trial.

A spokesman for the artist also made it clear she felt the country’s tax authorities were accusing her of lying about residing outside of Spain ‘without evidence’ for the years she had been charged with tax fraud.

Shakira, previously a tax resident in the Bahamas, only registered as a full-time tax resident in Spain in 2015 despite starting to date her ex Gerard Pique five years earlier.


People who spend more than 183 days in a given calendar year in Spain are considered Spanish residents for tax purposes.


Spanish tax inspectors reportedly spent more than a year checking up on Shakira, even visiting her favourite hairdressers in Barcelona and checking her social media to try to show she spent most of the three years in dispute in Spain.


They concluded she had spent 242 days in Spain in 2012, 212 days in 2013, and 243 days in the country in 2014 before indicting her with six counts of tax fraud for those three years.


A statement released by Shakira’s Barcelona-based publicists LLYC last November and authorized by Shakira said: ‘Shakira is a taxpayer who has always shown impeccable tax conduct and has never had tax problems in any other jurisdiction.

‘The singer relied on top advisers such as PriceWaterhouseCoopers. She never exceeded the 183 days of presence in Spain required to be a tax resident.

‘With no solid evidence to support the charges against her, she has been fiercely persecuted in the criminal and media spheres using unacceptable methods to damage her reputation and force her to come to a settlement agreement.’


November 20 has been scheduled as the start of Shakira’s tax trial, to take place over 12 sessions.


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