Shakira Settles Fraud Case Just Hours Before Trial
Shakira settled her tax fraud case, just hours before it was due to go to trial.
The "Hips Don't Lie" hit-maker had been set to appear in court in Barcelona, Spain, on Monday (Nov. 20) over allegations she failed to pay 14.5 million euros in Spanish income tax between 2012 and 2014, but despite maintaining her innocence, she has agreed a deal because she is tired of the legal battle getting in the way of her time with her sons, Milan, 10, and Sasha, 8.
She said in a statement: “Throughout my career, I have always strived to do what’s right and set a positive example for others.
"That often means taking the extra step in business and personal financial decisions to procure the absolute best counsel, including seeking the advice of the world’s preeminent tax authorities PricewaterhouseCoopers International Limited and Ernst + Young Global Limited who have been my advisors during this whole process.
"Unfortunately, and despite these efforts, tax authorities in Spain pursued a case against me as they have against many professional athletes and other high-profile individuals, draining those people’s energy, time, and tranquility for years at a time.
"While I was determined to defend my innocence in a trial that my lawyers were confident would have ruled in my favor, I have made the decision to finally resolve this matter with the best interest of my kids at heart who do not want to see their mom sacrifice her personal well-being in this fight."
The 46-year-old star, whose 12-year relationship with Gerard Pique ended last year, plans to view the settlement as a "win" because she can put the case behind her now and focus on the future.
She added: " I need to move past the stress and emotional toll of the last several years and focus on the things I love: my kids and all the opportunities to come in my career, including my upcoming world tour and my new album, both of which I am extremely excited about.
"I admire tremendously those who have fought these injustices to the end, but for me, today, winning is getting my time back for my kids and my career.”
As part of the deal, Shakira will receive a suspended three-year sentence and a multi-million euro fine.