The Kenya Revenue Authority has unravelled yet another a tax evasion racket involving miss-declarations of imported items at the port of Mombasa.
The latest trick had seen two high value motor vehicles declared as personal effects and household goods last week.
Tax officials based at the port of Mombasa seized two Range Rovers and one Mercedes Benz, valued at Sh28 million and with an estimated tax value of Sh8.5 million.
KRA Commissioner for Customs and Border Control Julius Musyoki said the authority would increase vigilance to unearth such schemes bleeding the country of millions in revenues.
“The vehicles were concealed in a cargo container, loaded with baby walkers and used mattresses, earlier shipped from the United Kingdom.
"This, would have caused the government to lose Sh8.5 million in tax revenue had the hawk-eyed KRA officials who scanned the 40 ft. container number: MRKU2024181 failed to spot the carefully concealed cargo,” Mr Musyoki said.
The importer, one Mr Saidar Muteweta of London (UK), had declared the goods as personal effects and household goods destined to a consignee in Uganda, a Mr Abubakari Semwkianyi.
All the three motor vehicles were seized and detained at the customs warehouse.
The taxman is working with relevant agencies, such as Interpol, Directorate of Criminal Investigations (DCI) and Regional Intelligence Liaisons Office (RILO), as part of an elaborate investigative effort.
Over the Easter weekend, KRA officials identified yet another container whose preliminary investigations indicate that the declaration does not match the scanned images.
According to manifest details submitted to the KRA, Container No. HLBU1231204 allegedly contained household goods and personal effects, while the scanned image appears to show a luxury motor vehicle.
“This particular container arrived at the port on March 14th, 2016 from the UK in transit to Uganda. The supplier is a Mr. Ronnie Musisi, while the consignee is a Mr. Robert Musisi,” the KRA said.
The container willl be subjected to 100 per cent verification in due course as the KRA stresses its commitment to curtail illicit trade through all points of entry.