The Guyana Revenue Authority has issued a warning to the general public to be on the lookout for persons who are looking to swindle them out of their money as they pose as customs officers and customs brokers.
In a statement, the GRA said that over a period of one week, reports have surfaced of persons impersonating Licensed Customhouse Brokers and Officers of the Guyana Revenue Authority, demanding money for various services “and disappearing into thin air”.
Several unsuspecting persons have fallen prey to the scheme and the GRA is therefore reminding the public that its officers “are NOT authorized to collect monies from taxpayers since all payments are effected at the Cashier’s – GRA’s Regional Offices and its Headquarters. An official GRA receipt should be obtained for all payments to the GRA”.
Members of the Public are being asked to ensure they request proof of GRA identification from anyone visiting them and identifying themselves as GRA Officers.
All staff of the GRA and Brokers are required to carry identification cards during the course of their duties, the GRA said.
The revenue collection agency also said persons should also note the identification number and name of any individual claiming to be from the GRA and requesting money or any other inducements.
“The legitimacy of the exercise can also be verified by calling 227-6060 extension numbers 3201-3208 and/or to make a report or visiting www.gra.gov.gy for the complete list of Licenced Customhouse Brokers”.
The GRA said it is also in receipt of information that there is a rumor being bandied around Social Media that “refund cheques which were not collected from the GRA by December 31, 2017 would be forfeited.”
According to the agency, such information is “a falsehood – NO such information ever emanated from the Authority. Currently the Authority is fast-tracking efforts to process refunds for taxpayers in keeping with the law and its commitment to employees and other individual taxpayers who have tax refunds pending.”