Celebrities

Shakira appears downcast as she pleads innocent in tax evasion case

Shakira was seen arriving in court on Thursday as she fights her tax evasion charge in Spain.

The Hips Don’t Lie singer allegedly failed to pay more than €14.5 million (£13 million) in tax between 2012 and 2014 and the mum-of-two – who has an estimated net worth of $220 million (£175 million) – was seen making her way to Esplugues de Llobregat court near Barcelona to plead her innocence.

Shakira, 42, was questioned by a Spanish judge about the tax fraud claims and the singer insisted she was not guilty of the accusations.

‘Shakira has always, including in the period between 2011 and 2014, met her tax obligations in every country she has worked in,’ the statement read.

The statement also claimed that ‘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’.

Shakira was one of the many famous names included in the Paradise Paper leaks that uncovered the offshore tax arrangements of several high-profile figures, including Madonna and U2′s Bono.

According to the Associated Press, Shakira listed the Bahamas as her official residence for tax purposes during those years but was in fact living in Catalonia, Spain – where tax rates are notoriously much higher – with her long-term partner, Barcelona football player Gerard Pique.

Prosecutors previously said her travel abroad was only ever for ‘short periods’ of time due to professional commitments, and the Waka Waka singer spent most of the year in Spain with Gerard and their sons Milan, five, and Sasha, three, after relocating in 2015.

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