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KRA verifies illegal hides, skins consignment at Mombasa port

[KRA Regional Coordinator Southern region Mr Joseph Tonui inspects the hides and skins intercepted at the Port of Mombasa. Looking on is Mr Daniel Wanyoike-Manager Investigation and enforcement department KRA. Photo/Ahmed Omar].

Kenya Revenue Authority has led a multi-agent team to undertake a 100% verification exercise of 43 Containers at the Mombasa port that were loaded with hides and skins worth approximately 112 Million.

The consignment was once declared by the customs department as mats.

The exporters of the hides and skins which are believed to be locally sourced had declared in Customs documents that the containers were loaded with mats which were to be shipped to the United States of America and Europe.

The main objective was to circumvent Customs regulations, and avoid the suspicion that they were involved in the illegal exportation of the products.

Investigations by the Kenya Revenue Authority (KRA) and enforcement department established that the Cargo which was to be shipped by two Vessels MV BOMAR FULGENT and MV COSCO YINKOU were destined to Nigeria instead of the US and Europe as it had been purported in shipping documents.

KRA Southern Region Coordinator Mr Joseph Tonui said the government would have lost approximately 75 million shillings in revenue should the exporters have managed to sneak the hides and skins out of the port for exportation.

Mr Tonui said traders had misled the details of the cargo to avoid the payment of high export duty associated with the exportation of hides and skins.

Exportation of hides and skins attract 80% duty.

Saying intelligence reports were received in good time to curtail the shipment of the skins.

[Multi-agency team led by KRA undertaking the verification exercise of the seized hides and skin containers. Photo/Ahmed Omar].

“The Authority and the entire Multi-agency team at the port have scaled up surveillance and enforcement measures to ensure the port is not used as a conduit to illegal Business,” Reiterated Mr Tonui.