Monrovia- The Supreme Court of Liberia has reversed the ruling handed in the US$19.2 million dollars tax case involving LonestarCell MTN and the Liberia Revenue Authority (LRA).
The Judge of the Tax court, Mozart Chesson, ruled in the case on Wednesday, September 16, 2015 at the Temple of Justice but LonestarCell-MTN took an exception to the ruling on grounds that it was based on procedure error and not the merit of the case. The company subsequently filed an appeal at the Supreme Court.
Prior to the Tax Court’s ruling, The Board of Tax Appeals (BOTA) in 2014 had earlier ruled in a hearing that Lonestar was obligated to the Government for $ 1.8M plus penalties and not the $ 19.2M, the Government was claiming.
Meanwhile, the Supreme Court in a seventy (70) page opinion rendered on September 8, 2016 reversed the Tax court’s ruling and confirmed and affirmed the earlier ruling of BOTA that LonestarCell MTN pays 2.4Million instead of the 19.2 million claimed earlier by the Liberia Revenue Authority.
A release from LonestarCell-MTN clarified that the high court’s ruling is a victory; as the court has confirmed the total amount in taxes LonestarCell-MTN contended it owed the government of Liberia.
The company added, as an institution once certificated by the government of Liberia as the largest tax payer, it now feels vindicated to rightfully service its tax obligation to the government in the wake of the Supreme Court’s ruling.