The Undersecretary of State for Taxation (SET), opened controls to several companies that are linked to the Cartes group business scheme.
“We must bear in mind that this was done at the request of the Prosecutor’s Office. We had a meeting more than a month and a half ago with Seprelad and the Public Ministry. The complaint already dates from the beginning of January. There were requests made by the Prosecutor’s Office regarding these complaints and Seprelad complemented the report that was delivered on May 20, ”he said in an interview with 1080 AM, Radio Monumental.
According to the report, there are companies that buy tobacco that are not registered, do not pay taxes and others report zero profit.
“The inspections are open and the taxpayers are bringing documentation to verify if there was fraud and if the fine is applied. Its stock, its movement, is controlled because we cross-check the information”, he explained.
The works began in February, but due to its complexity, there are still no significant advances. It should be remembered that the possible irregularities are not only tax.
“This process has not yet been completed, it is very long. The audits that we carry out by law have a duration of 45 days, but taxpayers have the right to request extensions and further extend the procedure”, he informed.
He pointed out that there are inconsistencies already detected, but he did not want to specify what they would be.
The minister, when asked if a company that is not dedicated to the financial field, can grant loans, pointed out that the law provides for loans between partners and shareholders and between companies of the same conglomerate.
“If it is not usual, there is no need to register anywhere,” he commented.
In other words, the lending practice must be habitual so that it must necessarily be registered with the Central Bank of Paraguay (BCP). The inspections have a duration of 45 days. The taxpayers we are auditing have the right to request extensions.
The Seprelad report details transfers abroad by the Cartes Group. On this point, Orué pointed out that the SET cannot control them.
“The banking issue is dealt with by the bank superintendence. Each company must have its own compliance officer to ensure compliance with anti-money laundering laws and tax laws, and if there are suspicious operations they must issue STRs (Suspicious Operations Reports) to Seprelad, and if there are indications of money laundering they must send his complaint to the Public Ministry,” he explained.
Finally, regarding the ghost companies that are buyers of the Cartes tobacco company, he stated that what they can do is file a complaint with the Public Ministry for the production of false documents.