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Economy

Taxman nets Sh9bn in war against illicit trade

Times Tower
Times Tower, the Kenya Revenue Authority's headquarters in Nairobi. FILE PHOTO | NMG 

Sting operations against illicit trade by a multi-agency team formed by President Uhuru Kenyatta last year helped recover Sh9 billion in tax receipts in the year ended June 2019, Kenya Revenue Authority has said.

The team, led by deputy head of Public Service Wanyama Musiambo, has been conducting operations since mid-last year, seizing counterfeit, sub-standard and smuggled goods.

“KRA participated in strategic operations as part of the multi-agency team against illicit trade and contrabands,” KRA commissioner-general, Githii Mburu says in annual revenue statement for financial year 2018-19. “Through the initiative, interceptions were made including those of high-end motor vehicles imported from the United Kingdom (UK).”

Some 12 top-of-the-range vehicles, which Kenya and UK border patrol teams said were stolen from the UK, were siezed at the Port of Mombasa on June 8, this year, following an intelligence report as part of the operations.

Seven other luxurious vehicles had been netted between November 2018 and April this year in what KRA said involved a syndicate which has been shipping in stolen high-end cars from the UK for sale locally and onward transmission to Uganda and across East Africa.

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“KRA, local security agencies, Interpol, United Kingdom authorities and other international partners are working together towards breaking the syndicate involved in smuggling stolen high-end vehicles from UK into Kenya,” Customs and Border Control Commissioner Kevin Safari said in June.

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