Shakira charged with tax evasion in Spain again

Grammy-award winner Shakira is already facing tax evasion charges in Barcelona dating from 2012.

Grammy-award winner Shakira is already facing tax evasion charges in Barcelona dating from 2012. Photo: AP

Spanish prosecutors have charged pop star Shakira with failing to pay 6.7 million euros ($11.1 million) in tax on her 2018 income, in the country’s latest financial allegations against the Colombian singer.

Shakira is alleged to have used an offshore company based in a tax haven to avoid paying the tax, Barcelona prosecutors said in a statement.

She has been notified of the charges in the US city of Miami, where she lives, according to Tuesday’s statement.

Shakira is already due to be tried in Barcelona on November 20 in a separate case that hinges on where she lived between 2012 and 2014.

In that case, prosecutors allege she failed to pay 14.5 million euros ($24.1 million) in tax.

Prosecutors in Barcelona have alleged the Grammy winner spent more than half the 2012-14 period in Spain and therefore should have paid taxes in the country, even though her official residence was in the Bahamas.

Spanish tax officials opened the latest case against Shakira last July. After reviewing the evidence gathered over the last two months, prosecutors have decided to bring charges. No date for a trial was set.

The public relations firm that has previously handled Shakira’s affairs made no immediate comment.

Last July, it said the artist had “always acted in concordance with the law and on the advice of her financial advisers”.

Shakira, whose full name is Shakira Isabel Mebarak Ripoll, has been linked to Spain since she started dating the now-retired soccer player Gerard Pique.

The couple, who have two children, lived together in Barcelona until last year, when they ended their 11-year relationship.

Spain tax authorities have over the past decade or so cracked down on soccer stars like Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo for not paying their full due in taxes.

Those players were found guilty of tax evasion but avoided prison time thanks to a provision that allows a judge to waive sentences under two years in length for first-time offenders.

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