Bosnia sends former head of tax agency to prison for corruption

A court in Bosnia and Herzegovina sentenced the former head of the country’s Indirect Taxation Authority (ITA BiH) to nine years for his role in a system of corruption which authorities say has deprived the state budget over $ 1 billion over five years. period.

Former director of the tax administration of Bosnia and Herzegovina, Kemal Čaušević, imprisoned for corruption. (Photo: CIN)Kemal Čaušević has been found guilty corruption and money laundering last week. The court ordered the confiscation of real estate worth at least 1.7 million convertible marks ($ 1.06 million) – the amount it was found to have received in bribes. wine.

As the first director of ITA BiH, serving from 2005 to 2011, Čaušević conspired with some of the large quantity importers of textiles from Turkey, China and Hungary and promised them “preferential treatment when importing for their companies ”, according to his 2017 indictment.

Preferential treatment meant reducing amounts subject to customs clearance, avoiding detailed inspections and accepting invoices he knew contained inaccurate data. In return, Čaušević demanded that importers pay him 1,000 Bosnia-Herzegovina convertible marks ($ 623) per truck.

After years of investigating the case, law enforcement arrested 53 people, including Čaušević, in June 2014. The suspects included other staff of ITA Bosnia and Herzegovina and Bosnian Customs -Herzegovina.

More than 300 officers took part in the operation called Pandora. Čaušević’s successor, Miro Džakula, said at the time that the country “lost more than $ 1 billion from 2006 to 2011 due to the illegal actions of ITA BiH employees”.

The owner of one of the companies involved in the scheme has been sentenced to two years in prison for paying bribes while another is being processed.

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