Supermodel Bar Rafaeli sentenced to 9 months of community jail by Israeli court

WION Web Team
New DelhiUpdated: Sep 14, 2020, 09:44 AM IST


Story highlights

Bar Rafaeli and her mother were convicted in July on offenses of evading paying taxes on income nearing $10 million. Bar's mother has been sentenced to 16 months of prison.

Supermodel Bar Rafaeli was sentenced to nine months of community service by an Israeli Court on Sunday. Her mother received 16 months of jail time for tax evasion.

The 35-year-old model and her mother were convicted in July on offenses of evading paying taxes on income nearing $10 million.

Rafaeli was potted at the Tel Aviv courthouse in a beige T-shirt and wearing a light blue surgical face mask. She was accompanied by her father, Raffi, her mother, Zipi, and lawyers.

Rafaeli and her mother were also ordered to pay a $1.5 million additionally to the millions of back taxes owed to the state.

The prolonged case has considerably damaged Rafaeli's well-crafted public image as the informal ambassador of the country. The parents have been accused of downplaying her ties with Israel.

The model though still remains a popular face on TV in the country with her faces dominating billboards across the country. She even hosted the Eurovision Song Contest in Tel Aviv.

The case, in fact, centers around Rafeli and her choice of residence during the time she was travelling the world for work and had a lengthy romantic relationship with Hollywood actor Leonardo Di Caprio.

The Israeli tax law determines residency primarily upon whether the person spent most of the calendar year in the country. The model stated she hadn't stayed in the country and therefore did not declare her income in certain years.

Her claim though was rejected by the prosecutors and she was charged for providing incorrect tax information. Refaeli's indictment said she earned some $7.2 million between the years 2009-2012 while claiming to reside overseas to avoid paying Israeli taxes on her income.

Earlier, an Israeli court had ruled that Refaeli’s relationship with DiCaprio did not qualify as a “family unit,” and therefore she could not claim his US residence as her own residence to avoid paying the full taxes she owed.