A businessman, Abraham Ofoli Sabah, has appeared before a Magistrates Court in Accra, for falsification, alteration and counterfeiting of Excise Tax Stamp contrary to Section 16 of the Excise Tax Stamp Act (Act 873).
Also charged is businesswoman, Esther Lamptey, for impeding tax administration, by selling out seized products to prevent seizure.
While Sabah is facing one count of intent to evade the requirement of the law and counterfeited excise tax stamp, which he affixed on GIHOC alcoholic beverages at Chorkor in October 2018, Lamptey is facing one count of impeding Tax Administration contrary to Section 82(3) (f) of the Revenue Administration Act 2016 (915).
The facts of the case as narrated by Police Detective Sergeant Joseph A. Salifu, was that the complainant is the Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA) while Abraham Ofoli Sabah is a supplier of GIHOC drinks and Lamptey , a retailer of the said drinks.
On October 4, 2018, the GRA taskforce led by Mr Branford Henry Sam, acting upon information, conducted a search on Madam Lamptey’s wholesale shop at Chorkor in Accra and found several cartons of GIHOC drinks with tax stamps suspected to be fake affixed on them.
According to prosecution, the tax stamps were tested in her presence by the taskforce, and the stamps were found not to be genuine.
Consequently, the taskforce sealed off the cartons of drinks with the fake tax stamp and warned her not to tamper with the cartons of drinks.
It was the case of the prosecution, that Madam Lamptey led task force to the residence of Mr Sabah, and said it was him (Sabah), who supplied her with 100 cartons of the drinks with the fake tax stamps affixed on them.
The court further heard that Mr Sabah reported the case to the GRA and during interrogation, admitted having supplied Madam Lamptey with 100 cartons of drinks affixed with the fake tax stamp.
He told investigators that he bought those cartons of drinks from a moving vehicle with a company named “TO GOD BE THE GLORY“, but could not lead officers to the company.
Prosecution said madam Lamptey later broke the seal of the Commissioner and sold the 100 cartons of drinks that were sealed off by the taskforce.
The court heard that she was earlier warned not to tamper with the cartons of drinks and some of the tested bottles of drinks were taken to the GRA office as exhibits.