Ministry of Taxes combating organized criminal group, not just sellers violating law - INTERVIEW

Head of Department for the Preliminary Investigation of Tax Crimes under the Ministry of Taxes Khagani Isgenderov’s interview with APA-Economics:


- Control measures on revealing of goods without excise labels are on the agenda…


- Ministry of Taxes has been conducting monitoring to determine the sales of goods without excise labels in Baku and regions. These measures have been intensified recently. Operations revealed ways of delivery of such goods and main facilities where they are sold. Unfortunately, these facilities include trade places that majority of people appeal to.


Moreover, Department for the Preliminary Investigation of Tax Crimes revealed goods without excise labels or with fake excise labels in trade facilities in Garadagh and Khazar districts, Sumgayit and Khirdalan cities last week.  


-  What kind of measures are being taken to prevent these irregularities?  


-  Persons engaging in sale and delivery of abovementioned goods and a criminal case has been launched on the facts. This is the next stage of operations conducted by the tax authorities against a group providing fake goods, at the same time, goods without excise labels, to trade facilities. Ministry of Taxes is combating organized criminal group, not just sellers violating law. The main purpose is too narrow the ‘shadow economy’, reduce the sale of goods without excise labels to zero.


-  You were aware of existence of a criminal group. It becomes clear that this is nor rare…


-  Of course…delivery of such goods to kiosks in bus stations, trade facilities and other sales points shows that this is done by a criminal group.


-  How does a criminal group organize its work?


-  For sale of these goods, private kiosks are constructed in different places. In many cases, the goods are stored in transport facilities and other places.


-  Inexistence of excise labels indicates that the product is fake, isn’t it?


-  Excises are applied to limit consumption of harmful goods. By buying goods without excise label or with fake excise label, a consumer may have got harmful goods. Application of excise such goods aims to control their sale.


-  What punishments are in the legislation for selling such goods?


-  Production, sale and import of goods without excise label cause administrative and criminal responsibility.  If such goods amount to a little amount (AZN 500), the individuals are fined AZN 35-40, legal entities – AZN 200-300 and officials – AZN 80-90. Punishment for production, import and sale of such goods amounting to more than AZN 500 is a penalty of AZN 1,000-2,000, correctional works and imprisonment for up to 2 years or up to 5 years for a group of people.


-  Goods without excise label lead to tax avoidance.  


- Sale of goods without excise label leads to extension of shadow economy and smuggling. Creation of regulation in this field is one of the main directions of the state.


-  Community should be enlightened about this field. What is your opinion about it?  


Ministry of Taxes will continue measures in this direction. At the same time, people should also inform relevant bodies about such cases.


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