The Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA) taskforce on Wednesday arrested three shop managers in Accra for allegedly evading tax on the electronic Value Added Tax (VAT) system.
The managers were arrested in Kasoa, Achimota, and North Industrial Area, for issuing non-e-VAT invoices.
The three managers were sent to the Customs headquarters for their statements and then handed over to the Criminal Investigation Department of the Police.
The initiative is part of an ongoing nationwide VAT inspection exercise to ensure tax compliance and retrieve taxes due the state.
Mr Joseph Annan, Area Enforcement Manager of GRA, in charge of Accra Central, said the exercise concluded what the Authority started on Monday to get rid of tax defaulters.
He said the Authority had 50 taxpayers on its e- VAT system and noticed that some were issuing invoices not certified by the Commissioner-General as required by law.
Section 41 of the VAT Act 2013, (Act 870) as amended by Act 1082 and Act 1087, states that every registered VAT taxpayer is required to issue an electronic VAT invoice with details that are prescribed by the Commissioner-General when they provide services or supply goods.
Investigations by the Authority revealed that some taxpayers were involved in the issuance of false tax invoices or sales receipts, while others had failed to integrate the certified invoicing system into the invoicing system of the GRA Commissioner-General.
Mr Annan said the punishment for such infractions as provided under the VAT Act included a fine of not more than one hundred penalty units or a term of imprisonment of not more than six months, or both, in addition to a payment of penalty of an amount of not more than GHc50,000 or three times the amount of tax involved.
He said people who flouted the law could also be charged under sections 78 and 82 of the Revenue Administration Act, 2016 (Act 915) that focused on the failure to comply with tax law and impeding tax administration, respectively.
“The Commissioner-General will prosecute all persons found to have committed offences under the provisions of the tax laws,” he said.
He urged the public and all VAT taxpayers to report any tax infractions to the Authority for the necessary action.