Sars targets Adriano Mazzotti in bid to recover tax debt

Sars obtained a High Court warrant of execution on Monday and raided his house and a warehouse elsewhere in Johannesburg.

Picture: EWN

PRETORIA - About two months after cigarette manufacturer Adriano Mazzotti claimed that his tax affairs were settled, the South African Revenue Service (Sars) has swooped on his Hyde Park property to seize his assets.

Sars obtained a High Court warrant of execution on Monday and raided his house and a warehouse elsewhere in Johannesburg.

Eyewitness News revealed that Economic Freedom Fighters leader Julius Malema’s wife lives in a house owned by Mazzotti.

In December, Mazzotti said through his attorney that he and his company, Carnilinx, remain tax compliant and are able to prove certificates to prove this.

It appears that a lot has changed in three months, with Sars officials and the sheriff attaching several vehicles and other assets at the businessman’s Hyde Park house.

It is understood that the revenue service is trying to recover R33 million of a R71 million debt.

The warrant and related tax debt is linked to a case dating to 2010, in which Mazzotti and his company are accused of cigarette smuggling and falsifying export documents.

Mazzotti, in statement, said that he was surprised by the Sars move as his legal representatives are in the midst of settlement negotiations with Sars over the tax matter. He says that the warrant was obtained without informing him.

He further added that he intends to take legal steps against anyone "who has unlawfully invaded my privacy, who unlawfully gained access to my home or committed any unlawful conduct."