Prosecutors in Milan have suggested that the ongoing probe into Prada creative director Miuccia Prada and her husband CEO, Patrizio Bertelli, in connection with tax concerns be put on hold, sources close to the matter told Reuters on Monday. Prada and Bertelli – as distinct from the brand – have been under investigation for alleged tax evasion since 2014, in one of many cases targeting high-profile Italian firms as a result of increasingly interventionist Italian tax authorities.
Italian prosecutors confirmed in September 2014 that they were investigating past individual tax filings of Prada SpA’s chief executive officers, making the two fashion executives the latest target of a government probe in the country. Miuccia Prada and Patrizio Bertelli were informed of the examination by the Italian Judicial Authority “regarding the accuracy of certain past tax filings by them as individuals in respect of foreign-owned companies,” Milan-based Prada said in a statement to the Hong Kong Stock Exchange in September.
The Prada probe came on the heels of a March 2013 seized by Italian police of more than 46 million euros ($58 million) of assets from executives linked to jeweler Bulgari for alleged tax evasion. Similarly, Domenico Dolce and Stefano Gabbana, the founding designers of the Italian fashion company that bears their name, were sentenced to 18 months in prison for non-payment of 40 million euros of taxes at one of the designers’ companies, a charge that was subsequently overturned.