Domenico Dolce and Stefano Gabbana, the designers behind the Dolce & Gabanna fashion house, have been found guilty of tax evasion. Despite their popularity and fan’s support the Italian Court decided to uphold last June’s guilty verdict that saw the designers both sentenced to 20 months in prison for committing tax evasion. They are not the only ones that went through court from the fashion industry : Valentino and Roberto Cavalli were accused as well of tax evasion, eventually cleared, and this year Miuccia Prada and her husband Patrizio Bertelli joined the trend, being targeted by the taxing authorities. Italy is thought to forfeit an estimated $150 billion a year in unpaid taxes, the third highest rate in Western Europe.
Coming back to Domenico and Stefano, the crime is said they committed goes back in 2004 when the duo sold their Dolce & Gabbana and D&G brands to the Luxembourg-based holding company Galdo SRL. They have always firmly denied the accusations brought to them and have appealed last year’s decision with their legal representative, Massimo Dinoia, saying : “Those issues that concern the image of the fashion house and the creation of products, while all that pertains to the commercial phase, such as the organization and the administration of the company structures, concern other offices and individuals.” For now Domenico Dolce and Stefano Gabbana are said to be shocked.