KRA unearths tax evasion scheme in foreign motor vehicles clearance


Geoffrey Onyancha Otara in court
Geoffrey Onyancha Otara in court. PHOTO | COURTESY | KRA

The Kenya Revenue Authority (KRA) says it has unearthed a tax evasion scheme where unscrupulous persons use forged documents to facilitate foreign registered vehicles to operate in Kenya without paying requisite taxes.

In a statement to newsrooms on Friday, KRA said investigations established that culprits use a false payment slips to facilitate clearance of foreign registered motor vehicles, thus evading payment of transit road toll fees.

“In a recent incident, KRA officers established that a clearing agent appointed by Pwani Hauliers Limited to facilitate movement of their trucks from Tanzania into and out of Kenya through Lunga Lunga OSBP. Whereas the agent had been provided with funds to pay requisite duties, he forged payment slips and presented them to KRA as genuine,” the statement reads.

The clearing agent, Geoffrey Onyancha Otara, was arrested in connection to the scheme and arraigned at the Kwale Law Courts on April 29, 2021.

He was charged jointly with others not before court unlawfully presented false documents, namely F147, to the Commissioner of Customs and Border Control which he knew or ought to have known to be false.

He is said to have committed the offense on or about March 22, 2021 at Lunga Lunga One Stop Border Post (OSBP) within Kwale County, being a representative of an exporter, Pwani Hauliers Limited.

He also faced a second count of conspiring with others not before court to unlawfully use a false document to evade taxes, in contravention of the East African Community Customs Management Act, 2004 (EACCMA).

The suspect denied the charges before Kwale Resident Magistrate Christine Auka. The court released him on a bond of Ksh. 70,000 with an alternative of Ksh. 40,000 bail. The case will be mentioned on May 13, 2021.

KRA said it is determined to detect and disrupt tax evasion schemes and prosecute criminals who engage in fraud at our borders to ensure that all individuals pay their fair share of taxes to the government.

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