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Supermodel Bar Refaeli Sentenced to 9 Months of Community Service for Tax Evasion

Supermodel Bar Refaeli Sentenced to 9 Months of Community Service for Tax Evasion

Israeli supermodel Bar Refaeli was sentenced to nine months’ community service and her mother was ordered jailed for 16 months for tax evasion on earnings from her international career.

Supermodel Bar Refaeli has been sentenced to nine months of community service by an Israeli court in a tax evasion case. Her mother and agent Zipi Refaeli has been given a 16-month prison term. Refaeli, 35, and her mother had been convicted in July on charges of tax evasion on income worth $10 million.

The sentences were made official on Sunday by a court in Israel, reports nydailynews.com. According to the website, Bar and Zippi had in June negotiated a plea that required them to pay a $1.5 million fine, plus the taxes they owe.

The model and her mother were photographed at the courthouse wearing masks amid the Covid-19 pandemic. Accompanying them were Bar's father, Rafi, and their lawyers.

The former Sports Illustrated swimsuit cover model, now a popular TV personality in Israel, had pleaded guilty to tax offences under a plea bargain that also included her mother.

Security for their court appearance on Sunday was tight, with barricades in the lobby marking a path to an elevator that took the pair to the courtroom. "We love you Bar," one woman shouted as the model and her mother, both wearing masks, walked past cameras and reporters, without making any comment.

Defence attorneys had argued that Refaeli, a papparazzi favourite during a romantic relationship with Hollywood actor Leonardo DiCaprio, did not have to declare to Israeli tax authorities worldwide income between 2009 and 2012.

Refaeli, now a mother of three and married to an Israeli businessman, had contended she was living overseas at the time and exempt from any Israeli tax bills.

first published:September 14, 2020, 09:42 IST