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Guernsey Court Freezes Tycoon's Assets In SA Tax Evasion Case

by Robert Lee, for LawAndTax-News.com, London

04 August 2006


Prosecutors in South Africa have secured a court order from the Royal Court of Guernsey to freeze the assets of a multi-millionaire who is accused of evading South African taxes, among several other charges.

Around 1 billion rand (US$146 million) in assets belonging to the Scottish-born tycoon Dave King were frozen by the Guernsey court following a request to the United Kingdom's law enforcement authorities from South Africa's Asset Forfeiture Unit.

King, the founder of IT company Specialised Outsourcing and a director and benefactor of Glasgow Rangers football club, has been charged with 322 counts of tax fraud, racketeering and foreign exchange contraventions in an indictment which stretches to a massive 200,000 pages.

According to Prosecutor John Myburgh, King has not submitted a single tax return for the last five years and has paid "practically no income tax" during that period.

Investigators also claim that King transferred R1 billion in proceeds from share sales out of South Africa in 1998 and 1999.

King appeared before a court in Pretoria, South Africa, on Tuesday, where, claiming that he cannot afford to hire legal representation because his assets in UK trusts have been frozen, he represented himself. He has reportedly launched a counter legal action in Guernsey to have some of these assets unfrozen for living expenses.

King claims that the courts have deliberately frozen his assets in order to pressure him into making a settlement, an accusation vehemently denied by the prosecution.

"It is outrageous to submit that we are infringing any of his rights," Myburgh stated, according to South African daily the Mail and Guardian.

The trial is expected to last six weeks.


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