Businessman sentenced to eight years in prison for VAT fraud

Fraud. Photo by Jefferson Santos on Unsplash

The South African Revenue Services (SARS) has welcomed the eight-year prison sentence of a Bloemfontein businessman for fraud.

MJ Ntabe of Ntabe Trading & Projects CC was recently found to have used fake tax invoices in the output and input VAT calculations. The Bloemfontein Regional Court this week sentenced Ntabe to five years’ direct imprisonment for the crime.

The court heard that Ntabe and his company provided tax revenue auditors with false supporting documents to support VAT calculations.

He said: “The SARS audit raised additional assessments, resulting in a total damage of R 1 million to SARS. The Close Corporation seized the transaction and only Mr. Ntabe was charged and he subsequently pleaded guilty.

Of the 21 charges, Ntabe was sentenced to 8 years imprisonment including 3 years suspended for 5 years on condition that the accused was not found guilty of fraud committed during the period of suspension.

SARS Commissioner Edward Kieswetter noted with concern the scourge of VAT-related crime, saying it has been on the rise for a long time.

“There are companies that are created for the sole purpose of defrauding SARS. This direct jail sentence must send a clear message that SARS has the ability to detect fraud and make it costly for perpetrators, ”he said.

Together with other law enforcement agencies, SARS will continue to bring those who commit these crimes to justice. –

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