The Kenya Revenue Authority wants the High Court to freeze four bank accounts owned by Chinese phone maker X-Tigi on suspicion that the firm has been evading taxes and stashing proceeds from its business in Hong Kong.
The taxman says in court filings that X-Tigi has been grossly under declaring income tax due to the KRA from sales, and has not been remitting PAYE.
Detectives from the taxman’s office say they are investigating X-Tigi and its director Gao Fei— a Chinese national-—on tax evasion charges and may transfer all its funds held at four Equity Bank accounts.
Neither Mr Fei nor X-Tigi have responded to the suit. Justice Francis Tuiyott on Friday ordered that the KRA and X-Tigi seek a hearing date at the registry.
“Mr Fei has never filed returns or any taxes yet he earns income and runs a US dollar account with considerable deposits. There has been regular funds transfer to a bank account in Hong Kong suspected to be income derived from the business. The director and agents of X-Tigi are Chinese nationals hence there is a high risk of them leaving the country without payment of taxes found due after the assessment or frustrating the recovery of taxes,” says Asenath Obaga, a KRA investigator.
The taxman believes a probe on X-Tigi’s four bank accounts held at Equity Bank will help reveal just how much the firm owes in taxes.