Alexandra Mitroshina says she has fully repaid her debt after facing criminal prosecution
Prominent Russian blogger Alexandra Mitroshina has announced that she has fully repaid her tax debt of over 120 million rubles ($1.5 million) after authorities opened a criminal investigation accusing her of tax evasion.
In a Youtube broadcast from Dubai, where she currently resides, the blogger admitted her mistake in not paying due attention to taxes. “Indeed, some taxes were not paid,” she said. “On April 20, 2022, I was subject to a tax audit. Immediately after the initiation of a criminal case, I paid most of the tax debt. Yesterday, I paid off in full the principal amount of the debt.”
Mitroshina insists that she never intended to hide her income and that she has always paid her taxes throughout her career as a blogger. She claimed that the debt arose due to the mistakes of an outsourcing company, as well as her own irresponsible attitude towards accounting.
Her statement comes after Russia’s Investigative Committee announced the initiation of a criminal case against Mitroshina on suspicion of tax evasion. That’s because authorities have reportedly launched a crackdown on Russia’s top-earning social media stars, nearly all of whom are believed to have massive outstanding tax debts.
According to several media sources, Russian tax authorities have created a special blogging department that focuses solely on social media personalities that make over 50 million rubles ($629,500) a year. Sources in the Federal Tax Service have reportedly told news outlet Baza that “no one has paid taxes” and suggested that the number of criminal cases against bloggers may soon increase.
Last week, top Russian lifestyle guru Elena Blinovskaya was dramatically detained at a border crossing to Belarus as she tried to flee the country. The blogger has since admitted to failing to pay over $11 million in taxes, as well as money laundering. The former beauty pageant winner, who has made a fortune selling her motivational online self-help classes to her 5.3 million followers on Instagram, has also been accused of falsifying business records in order to hide her income.
A month before that, popular fitness blogger Valeria Chekalina and her husband were also charged with failing to pay over 311 million rubles ($3.8 million) in taxes. The pair now faces up to three years in jail, as well as a hefty fine if found guilty of tax evasion.
May 03, 2023 at 09:44PM