Shakira under investigation for alleged tax evasion

Spanish authorities claim she failed to pay income tax in the country for two years

Shakira under investigation for alleged tax evasion

Colombian singer Shakira at a charity event in the Camp Nou stadium, Barcelona, Spain, 23-01-2018. Image: AP Photo/Manu Fernandez, File

Colombian pop star Shakira has become the latest celebrity to find herself under investigation by the Spanish authorities for possible tax evasion.

It is alleged the singer failed to pay income tax while living in Barcelona between 2012 and 2014, having not officially switched residence from the Bahamas until 2015.

The star lives in the Catalan city with her partner, Barcelona defender Gerard Pique, and their two sons.

The pair got together in 2011.

Prosecutor Jose Miguel Company said tax authorities referred the probe to the Barcelona prosecutor's office in December, but a decision on whether to press charges may not arrive until mid-June, when Shakira is due to be on tour to promote her latest album.

If the investigation finds any wrongdoing, the 40-year-old singer could follow a number of other high-profile figures who have found themselves in court over allegations of tax-dodging.

Last year, Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho settled accusations made against him, while Pique's teammate Lionel Messi avoided jail but was handed a fine of more than €253,000. Real Madrid's Cristiano Ronaldo has also appeared in court.

Shakira has hired auditing firm PwC for the investigation, which comes months after she was named alongside other famous faces from the world of music in the Paradise Papers.

Madonna and U2 frontman Bono were just two of the names featured in the leaks, which detailed offshore tax arrangements.

They appear to show that in 2009, Shakira relocated her intellectual property rights and brands to a company based in Malta, which has been accused of being a tax haven.

Shakira hits include 'Hips Don't Lie,' 'Underneath Your Clothes' and 'Whenever, Wherever.'