Milan

Dolce & Gabbana shops close in Milan out of 'indignation'

Fashion house incensed over tax-evasion ruling

Dolce & Gabbana shops close in Milan out of 'indignation'

Milan, July 19 - Dolce & Gabbana boutiques in Milan on Friday hung signs in their shuttered doors saying "Closed for indignation" due to a comment made by a city official reported by media on Thursday. All of Dolce & Gabbana activities in Milan remained closed on Friday, including the posh Via Della Spiga 2 newstand, the Martini Bar, a barber and the Gold cafe' in Via Risorgimento, the public relations office confirmed. Stefano Gabbana of Dolce & Gabbana fashion house lashed out Thursday at a Milan city official who commented on his conviction for tax evasion. "You suck," tweeted Gabbana in a message directed at Franco D'Alfonso over newspaper articles quoting the city councillor commenting on the fashion team and charges of tax evasion. Il Giornale quoted D'Alfonso as suggesting that although fashion is important to local business, "we do not need tax evaders to represent us". Il Corriere della Sera quoted D'Alfonso saying that symbolic places of the city should not be conceded to VIP brands that have racked up tax fraud convictions. Il Corriere della Sera also said D'Alfonso declared that his phrase had been "extrapolated" by the press from an "informal conversation regarding general topics, and certainly did not express the opinion of the administration". D'Alfonso added that he respects the Constitutional principle of "innocent until proven guilty", and hoped that Dolce and Gabbana are able to clarify their position in continuing legal proceedings. Last month Gabbana and his partner Domenico Dolce were sentenced to one year and eight months in jail after being convicted of involvement in tax evasion on almost one billion euros of earnings. The two founders of the iconic fashion house, who are expected to appeal, were also ordered to pay compensation to Italy's tax authorities. Milan prosecutors had said that the creators of the world-famous brand, with six others, evaded taxes for several years after setting up the front company Gado in Luxembourg. The duo have received fan support in their fight although one person tweeted in response to Gabbana: "You suck - you earn millions and do not pay taxes". Dolce & Gabbana public relations did not indicate how long the businesses would remain closed.

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