Upper East CEPS busts car syndicate

The Customs Division of the Ghana Revenue Authority in the Upper East Region has “busted a new modus operandi” by a syndicate of smugglers and tax evaders who operate along the Tema-Paga-Burkina Faso corridor.


As a result CEPS patrol on  November 22, 2017 arrested and  impounded a Mercedes Benz saloon Car S320 which was using a fake Diplomatic Car (CD) number plate to enable them to evade the payment of relevant duties amounting to GH¢65,392.86.


The driver of the vehicle who confessed that the use of the fake CD number plate was a new strategy, however, bolted into the bush while under intense interrogation by the officials.


Two old ladies on the car who were used as decoy said they were travelling to Techiman and were only given lift by the driver.


Briefing the Ghanaian Times, Mr Francis Tanlongo, the Regional Commander of Customs Division disclosed that the Mercedes Benz S320 with chasis number WDD2200651AD24586 was cleared from the Tema port on October 28, 2017 as a transit vehicle bound for Burkina Faso for a client known as Ouedrago Sabadine.


The Commander pointed out that in an attempt to outwit Custom Officials the car was first driven to Mokman Services Limited in Tema for (repairs) after it was cleared from the port on October 28, 2017.

According to Mr Tanlongo, the Customs Division kept track of the movement of the said vehicle after its release from the workshop on November 14, 2017.


The Commander said this transit Mercedes Benz finally arrived at the Paga border on November 20, 2017 with a DP Registration number DP6846G and was cleared to continue to Burkina Faso the same day.


However, he said the same Benz car was spotted by Customs Division patrol teams along the Paga-Navrongo road with a new diplomatic corp number plate CD1749 – 17 Ghana and was flagged to stop. Rather, it sped off and was chased and arrested.


The Commander said investigation revealed that it was the same Benz car which had crossed the Paga border, only two days earlier.


Mr Tanlongo hinted that his men had intensified their border patrols but was constrained by lack of staff and appealed for more officers to be posted to the region.


Meanwhile, more than 30 saloon cars and four V8 vehicles which have impounded between January to date for tax evasion would be gazetted for auction at the end of December and proceeds running into millions of Ghana Cedis would be paid to government chest.

From A A Mbord, Bolgatanga



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