Final Ruling in Tax Evasion Case Against Dolce & Gabbana

Dolce_&_Gabbana Image by Eva Rinaldi

Image by Eva Rinaldi

Although Domenico Dolce and Stefano Gabbana, designers of the fashion label Dolce & Gabbana, were cleared of tax evasion charges in 2014 after their 2010 conviction was successfully appealed to the Supreme Court of Cassation (the nation’s highest court of appeal), this week their co-defendant has now also been cleared. While earlier this month Chanel designer Karl Lagerfeld has now met with his own tax evasion investigation, the infamous D&G case has finally come to a close, with Alfonso Dolce (CEO of the fashion label and brother of designer Domenico) being acquitted of tax evasion by the Milan Court of Appeals.

At issue was a sum of money that was being kept in a corporation named Gado Srl, on which the Italian prosecutors alleged 1 billion euros in taxes would have been due if that money had been held by the designers and their label. Despite two lower court rulings that the company had evaded the tax system, the Supreme Court’s ruling found both the designers and Dolce’s brother innocent of all charges. Still, a 2013 ruling on a separate matter remains in force, ordering Dolce and Gabbana to pay 343.3 million euro fine over an accusation that the firm evaded 500 million euros in taxes in 2004 when selling their company to a holding company under their names.

That said, the company has not missed a season during the turmoil, producing their lines each season without disruption. The creative reaction to the final legal victory will be interesting to watch as the next year’s lines are rolled out at the 2016 Milan Fashion Weeks.

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