D&G Threaten to Close if Ruling Isn't Overturned

Design duo (and newly minted billionaires) Domenico Dolce and Stefano Gabbana are taking a bit of an unconventional route in terms of appealing their guilty verdict for evading millions of dollars in taxes. The Dolce & Gabbana founders' legal team is reportedly set to appeal the ruling, but it seems the two men are taking matters into their own hands for the moment, by releasing a statement that they will close the brand if the ruling is not overturned. According to their statement, which was released yesterday, they don't appreciate "'being crucified like thieves" and said: "We will close. What do you want us to do? We will close. We will not be able to deal with it. Impossible."

The design duo and several other individuals from the D&G company were under investigation since the sale of the brand to a holding company called Gado, which they allegedly established in Luxembourg in 2004, enabling them to avoid the Italian higher tax rate, and as a result, they evaded $540 million in taxes. However, the designers have been shooting down the ruling and the allegation. According to Gabbana: "How could we accept being branded tax evaders? We are good people, we live in Italy we pay taxes in Italy, we don't pretend to live abroad." The designers' statements come on the heels of not-so-nice words from Milan's Councillor for Commerce Franco D'Alfonso and the temporary closing of the brand's Milan stores in protest of the recent ruling. More to come ...