Importers to pay for sins of clearing agents

What you need to know:

  • Back in 2001, KRA wrote to Total demanding Sh23.4 million for 21 cases of burners that the oil marketer had imported.

  • Total held that its agent — Veritas Agencies Limited — had paid all taxes for the burners, and sent KRA documents in support of its stand.

  • With KRA insisting that the documents were forgeries and unwilling to give Total 21 days to investigate further, the oil marketer sued.

In settling a 17-year battle between the Kenya Revenue Authority (KRA) and oil marketer Total, the Court of Appeal has now condemned importers to bear responsibility in the event of any tax fraud committed by their clearing and forwarding agents.

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