Domenico Dolce and Stefano Gabbana were sentenced to one year and eight months in prison for tax evasion today.
A judge ruled that the 2004 sale of their brand to holding company Gado was an attempt to avoid declaring taxes on €1 billion of royalties.
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The pair have been locked in a legal battle since 2008, as they continue to deny the allegations to the extent that they refused to attend the hearing today.
Given the length of the appeals process it is unlikely that Domenico Dolce and Stefano Gabbana will have to spend any time in prison, but it remains a shocking turn of events. This ruling signals the beginning of the next phase in the case – the future remains uncertain for the men who have dressed the likes of Madonna and Kate Moss, but they have quite the battle on their hands.