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October 23, 2014

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Miss Universe Olivia Culpo’s Taj Mahal Photo Shoot Leads Police Complaint

Miss Universe Olivia Culpo’s Taj Mahal Photo Shoot Leads Police Complaint

10/11/2013

Olivia Culpo, who became the first Miss Universe from the United States in 15 years when she won in 2012, will be investigated for posing for commercial pictures on the grounds of the sacred Taj Majal.

Culpo, 21, visited India’s famed white-marble mausoleum on her 10-day trip to the country. During her time at the popular destination, she's accused of shooting a footwear commercial. The Archaeological Survey of India, which did not give permission to Culpo or the Miss Universe crew traveling with her, filed a formal complaint with Indian police. On Thursday, the authorities took action.

A guilty verdict could find Culpo facing two years in prison and fined 100,000 rupees ($1,600), reported ABC News. Before Culpo is formally charged with anything, however, the Indian police will further investigate the claims of the ASI.

Throughout the shoot in question, Culpo posed with a variety of sandals. She was spotted sitting on a bench with one sandal on, while holding the other in her hand. She apparently had another pair next to her, and later stood on top of the bench for more pictures. Culpo is not denying that the picture-taking took place, and is even suggesting that she voiced concerns about its level of appropriateness.

"I guess the vision was, 'What's better to identify India than the Taj Mahal?' But unfortunately it's something that was highly offensive,” Culpo told the Providence Journal of Rhode Island. “Honestly, I did say out loud at one point, 'Isn't this a little inappropriate?'"

The Miss Universe organization has apologized for the photo shoot, but maintains that it was not done with any commercial intent.

– Chelsea Regan

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Read more: Olivia Culpo, Taj Mahal, Courts, Miss Universe

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