FAMOUS Spanish singer Montserrat Caballe has avoided jail by striking a deal with Spain’s public prosecutor over tax fraud charges.
The 81-year-old soprano – who famously sang the ‘Barcelona’ song with Queen’s Freddie Mercury, which was used as the official anthem of the 1992 Olympics – has been handed a six-month prison sentence, which she will not serve, and a fine of €250,000, according to Spanish newspaper 20 minutos.
Barcelona-born Montserrat did not declare her earnings for 2010 and listed her official residence as being in Andorra, for the “sole purpose of not paying her taxes,” according to the nation’s public prosecutor. Her lawyers had been negotiating with Spain’s office for economic crimes and tax agency, who wanted the singer to serve a jail sentence as well as paying a fine. It’s alleged that Montserrat did not pay €500,000 but has since paid the money back in two instalments.
The opera star will be pleased she did not suffer the same fate as Isabel Pantoja, another famous Spanish singer, who was jailed in November for money laundering.