Sigur Rós have called their second prosecution for tax evasion “unjust and draconian”, and claim that it will leave them to face financial ruin or even jail. The band has said that the second trial has caused them to lose faith in Iceland: Jonsí, the band’s frontman, has already left the country for Los Angeles, and the others are considering following suit. This was covered by The Guardian this morning.
The case was last reported on by the Grapevine a month ago, when Jonsí’s lawyer called the ongoing investigation into the band’s tax evasion illegal. The band was accused of evading 151 million Icelandic Krona (£840,000 or $1.2 million) between 2011 and 2014. They claim that they were unaware of the evasion and blame their accountant, but were found guilty and paid back the money, plus fines and interest.
However, Sigur Rós now face a second trial in a separate Icelandic court, and claim that the second trial is a breach of human rights rules on double jeopardy.
“We are not denying that we did something wrong,” said Georg Holm, the bassist for the band. “We went out of our way to fix it, find out what happened and pay the money back. But now we are being taken to court for the same thing again. We are not above any law in Iceland, but the law is not correct. And we are speaking out because we have a platform to speak out.”
Meanwhile, Jonsí complained that despite years promoting Iceland, Iceland is “now treating [them] like criminals.”
The Icelandic government does not offer comment on active legal cases.
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