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Death and Taxes: How SARS made hitmen, drug dealers and tax dodgers pay their dues

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Nothing in life is certain, except death and taxes – or so the expression goes. And over the past two decades South African criminals and tax dodgers have come to realise this truth the hard way.Tax sleuth Johann van Loggerenberg was at the centre of many of SARS’ high-profile cases during his time there. As far as SARS is concerned all forms of income are subjected to tax Nothing in life is certain, except death and taxes – or so the expression goes. And over the past two decades South African criminals and tax dodgers have come to realise this truth the hard way.Tax sleuth Johann van Loggerenberg was at the centre of many of SARS’ high-profile cases during his time there. As far as SARS is concerned all forms of income are subjected to tax, even if by ill-gotten means. Whether you are a drug dealer from Durban, one of the hitmen who shot Brett Kebble or soccer boss Irvin Khoza, you have to pay your dues!Van Loggerenberg relates the riveting inside stories of the investigations into businessmen like Dave King, Billy Rautenbach, Barry Tannenbaum and his ponzi scheme, and others. Over the years he got to know all the scams and dirty tricks in the book and he explains these in plain language.In these investigations the tax authority worked closely with the police, the NPA and the Directorate of Special Operations. However, after a few years SARS became the victim of its own success. In telling the stories of how tax evaders were caught, Van Loggerenberg also shows how the power struggle between different state departments and the phenomenon of state capture in recent years started crippling SARS.


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Nothing in life is certain, except death and taxes – or so the expression goes. And over the past two decades South African criminals and tax dodgers have come to realise this truth the hard way.Tax sleuth Johann van Loggerenberg was at the centre of many of SARS’ high-profile cases during his time there. As far as SARS is concerned all forms of income are subjected to tax Nothing in life is certain, except death and taxes – or so the expression goes. And over the past two decades South African criminals and tax dodgers have come to realise this truth the hard way.Tax sleuth Johann van Loggerenberg was at the centre of many of SARS’ high-profile cases during his time there. As far as SARS is concerned all forms of income are subjected to tax, even if by ill-gotten means. Whether you are a drug dealer from Durban, one of the hitmen who shot Brett Kebble or soccer boss Irvin Khoza, you have to pay your dues!Van Loggerenberg relates the riveting inside stories of the investigations into businessmen like Dave King, Billy Rautenbach, Barry Tannenbaum and his ponzi scheme, and others. Over the years he got to know all the scams and dirty tricks in the book and he explains these in plain language.In these investigations the tax authority worked closely with the police, the NPA and the Directorate of Special Operations. However, after a few years SARS became the victim of its own success. In telling the stories of how tax evaders were caught, Van Loggerenberg also shows how the power struggle between different state departments and the phenomenon of state capture in recent years started crippling SARS.

30 review for Death and Taxes: How SARS made hitmen, drug dealers and tax dodgers pay their dues

  1. 5 out of 5

    R.B.

    Having been lured by not reading the description and momentarily ignoring that different fields will have different meanings for the same acronym, I should say that this book came across as a pleasant surprise. It does no good not being familiar with the everyday politics of South Africa, otherwise I guess the name of the author would give it all away. For the most part the writing is quite fluid, and tends to give time to explain some of the technical jargon used, and it does constitute a good a Having been lured by not reading the description and momentarily ignoring that different fields will have different meanings for the same acronym, I should say that this book came across as a pleasant surprise. It does no good not being familiar with the everyday politics of South Africa, otherwise I guess the name of the author would give it all away. For the most part the writing is quite fluid, and tends to give time to explain some of the technical jargon used, and it does constitute a good approach to the challenges that tax authorities face worldwide. You see, just as JvL says, the tax money is the blood that feeds schools, hospitals and every single program you can think of comming from the government. As such, any attempt to not pay their dues, is a crime against society. I bet that for every story here, you can go to a different country and find its lookalike. And that is the universality of this book. Where the book becomes less fluid, and trickier to follow if you are not familiar with South Africa's politics over the last 20 years or so, is in the final chapters. There the author picks up on where he left us in the first chapter, to set up his defense about the ongoing cases against him. My interest at this point really took a dive, but it doesn't tarnish the joy I had getting there.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Adi Eyal

    Not often that the taxman becomes the protagonist. Great insight into how SARS conducted investigations into tax dodgers. Compiled as a list of short stories, it is very accessible. It left me wanting more though. The chapters were not detailed enough. The content is thrilling but I think the author could have done more to do justice to the stories.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Mairead

  4. 5 out of 5

    Jonah

  5. 5 out of 5

    Lindsey Roots

  6. 5 out of 5

    Elaine Bing

  7. 5 out of 5

    ABH

  8. 5 out of 5

    Eric Brand

  9. 4 out of 5

    Leigh Povey

  10. 5 out of 5

    cheryl ann timmis

  11. 4 out of 5

    Deb

  12. 4 out of 5

    michael

  13. 5 out of 5

    Tobie Scott

  14. 5 out of 5

    Nicholas

  15. 4 out of 5

    Janine Grüter

  16. 4 out of 5

    Lin Fisher

  17. 5 out of 5

    Michael Beaumont

  18. 5 out of 5

    Lee

  19. 4 out of 5

    Tiaan Goussard

  20. 4 out of 5

    Ross

  21. 5 out of 5

    Akida J

  22. 4 out of 5

    W.A. Taylor

  23. 5 out of 5

    Silje

  24. 4 out of 5

    DeWet

  25. 5 out of 5

    Alistair Kennedy

  26. 4 out of 5

    Ruan

  27. 4 out of 5

    Mahlankga Si

  28. 5 out of 5

    Tracey Babb

  29. 5 out of 5

    Gugulethu Gwamanda

  30. 4 out of 5

    Kyle

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