Gay fashioner designer Stefano Gabbana has been sentenced for tax evasion along with his gay former partner.

On Wednesday, Gabbana, 44, was sentenced to one year and eight months in prison for tax evasion of 200 million euros (£171 million).

Business associate and former partner Domenico Dolce also received the same sentence.

Lawyers for Dolce and Gabbana, whose celebrity clients include Beyonce and Madonna, immediately said they will appeal, and under Italian law the sentence will be suspended in the meantime.

In an interview with an Italian newspaper in 2006 Gabbana revealed how he had approached a female friend and asked her to be a surrogate mother.

He said: “My dream is to have a baby, not to adopt one because I am not up to it and I don’t feel strong enough.”

“I want my own child, a biological child, the fruit of my sperm, conceived through artificial insemination because it wouldn’t make sense for me to make love to a woman I don’t love.

“The person I love today is my partner so I am looking for a civilised and refined woman. A week ago I asked a dear friend of mine, who is twelve years younger than me, if she would help.

“I asked her ‘Would you like to be the mother of my child ?’ She was left a bit shocked and the following day telephoned and said she was still shocked but thought it was a great idea.”

“I am opposed to the idea of a child growing up with two gay parents.

“A child needs a mother and a father. I could not imagine my childhood without my mother. I also believe that it is cruel to take a baby away from its mother,” he added.