South African Revenue Service Celebrates R5.5 Million Busts


The South African Revenue Service (SARS) says it’s happy about making two busts valued at R5.5 million over the weekend.

According to SARS, the first incident involved the interception of a male traveller going to Dubai by SARS Customs officials.

He was trying to smuggle R3.9 million through the King Shaka International Airport in Durban.

The revenue service related that “the traveller was profiled for a routine check where scanned bags were found with currency (valued at) R3 972 400.”

He was thus, handed over to the South African Police Service (SAPS) for further investigation.

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SARS narrated that the second incident unveiled when a detector dog sniffed hair shampoo bottles filled with 6kg cocaine estimated at R1.7 million at OR Tambo International Airport

Again, they handed the shipment over to the SAPS for further investigation.

Not long ago, a woman travelling from Sao Paolo, Brazil, was intercepted with 8kg of cocaine worth R2.3 million at the same Airport.

SARS Customs’ inspectors in the detector dog unit reportedly intercepted the passenger with the cocaine in a suitcase.

When the woman’s luggage was scanned, five handbags lined with secret compartments were found inside one of the two suitcases after the dog reacted positively to the bag.

Meanwhile, SARS has received over R4 million tax returns for the 2016 tax season. It received 4, 166, 243 individual income tax returns which include a 1, 217, 428 returns for the previous years of assessment.

The revenue establishment disclosed that over 1.4 million returns were submitted via eFiling and over 1.5 million returns submitted electronically at a SARS branch.

In line with that, SARS cautioned taxpayers about fraud and phishing scams striving to gain access to banking details.

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“SARS will never ask for personal, tax banking or eFiling details (passwords, login information, etc) via phone or email. Taxpayers will also never be asked to log into the eFiling website from a link in an email.

“Taxpayers are urged to take ownership of their tax affairs even if they are making use of a registered tax practitioner or intermediary. This includes protecting their personal details and the credentials used on electronic devices,” SARS stated.