Tax officials, anti corruption agents raid law firms

Oleosi Kgosi

Nigerians and attorneys probed in shady real estate deals accusations

Law enforcement officers comprising of Directorate of Corruption and Economic Crime (DCEC), Botswana Unified Revenue Service (BURS) and Directorate of Intelligence Services descended on three law firms this week apparently in search of files on Nigerian businessmen allegedly involved in fraudulent property acquisitions and transfers.

Initially, Mk Moesi & Company and Moyo Legal Practice were raided on Tuesday evening and some files confiscated from the law firms. That raid was followed by yet another one on Matlala Attorneys on Wednesday.

Allegations pertaining to the issue are that the law firms have been providing conveyancing services to criminal foreign property developers who have connived with corrupt Gaborone City Council employees to illegally acquire over a hundred plots in Gaborone alone.

To that end, four Nigerians and a Zimbabwean have been detained to aid with investigations and two GCC employees are being interrogated.

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The voice further learnt that the suspects have not only stolen land and real estate but are also suspected to have been evading tax and laundering money.

Tax officials, anti corruption agents raid law firms

Confirming that they are in a joint operation with Botswana Police, Directorate Intelligent Security (DIS) and BURS,DCEC Acting Director General, Tshepo Pilane said they will be raiding a “handful of law firms”

However for her par, BURS General Manager, Mable Bolele was reluctant to give updates on the findings established after the raid noting that, “I cannot comment on the tax affairs of our clients. The laws guiding us do not allow us to share such information with third parties. We only deal directly with our clients.”

Asked if he was aware that some GCC employees were involved in shady real estate deals, Mayor Austin Abraham said, “I do not have an idea, no one has communicated anything to me. I just saw everything on social media.”

Meanwhile, a senior partner at Matlala attorneys said, “The truth is we were with BURS as they wanted to check one or two files of people they have previously assisted,” he said.

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