Spanish prosecutors want 8 years in prison for Shakira

Pop star accused of failing to pay €14.5 million in taxes to Spanish government between 2012 and 2014

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MADRID – Spanish prosecutors said Friday they will ask the court to sentence Colombian pop star Shakira to eight years and two months in prison if she is convicted of alleged tax fraud in an expected trial.

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Shakira, whose full name is Shakira Isabel Mebarak Ripoll, is accused of failing to pay 14.5 million euros ($18.92 million Canadian) in taxes to the Spanish government between 2012 and 2014. Prosecutors said they would also seek a fine of 24 million euros (C$31.31 million).

The indictment details six allegations against Shakira. The singer rejected a settlement deal offered by prosecutors this week and decided to go to trial instead. The exam date has not yet been set.

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Her publicists in London said in a statement Friday that Shakira “has always cooperated and complied with the law and has demonstrated integrity as an individual and taxpayer.” Publicists accused the Spanish tax agency of violating her rights.

Shakira’s Spanish PR team said earlier this week that the artist has paid the amount she is said to be owed, including 3 million euros in interest.

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Prosecutors in Barcelona say the Grammy winner spent more than half of each year between 2012 and 2014 in Spain and should have paid taxes in the country.

Shakira recently ended her 11-year relationship with FC Barcelona star Gerard Pique, with whom she has two children. The family lived in Barcelona.

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