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Press Release

High Court order against Gold Leaf Tobacco is watershed moment

Friday 26 August, 2022 – A HIGH Court preservation order against Gold Leaf Tobacco Corporation (GLTC) is a watershed moment in the battle against organised crime groups who are looting South Africa on an unprecedented scale, according to Tax Justice SA (TJSA).

“This is a huge breakthrough in the battle against the illicit cigarette trade that robs South Africa of R19 billion a year,” said TJSA founder Yusuf Abramjee.

“For over a decade, GLTC have been the prime suspects as South Africa’s illegal cigarette trade has grown into a national menace of devastating proportions.

“SARS under Commissioner Edward Kieswetter deserve huge credit for making this massive and brave first step. We must all now help and support them as they pursue both our money and the people who have been taking it from us.

“Prosecuting authorities must now ensure that the masterminds of this industrial-scale theft are brought to justice and feel the full might of the law. Lock them up.”

On Friday, the South African Revenue Service (SARS) welcomed an order by the North Gauteng High Court granting a preservation order in terms of section 163 of the Tax Administration Act No. 28 of 2011 against Gold Leaf Tobacco Corporation and its directors, Simon Rudland and Ebrahim Adamjee.

The order will prevent the Zimbabwean-owned company from dissipating realisable assets and thereby frustrating the collection of taxes.

“We are waiting for more details from SARS about the precise implications of the order, whether GLTC can continue trading and whether a curator will take over,” said Abramjee.