Public interest to form basis of legal defence in Sars court battle, Pauw says

Author Jacques Pauw says his legal team will fight South African Revenue Services (Sars) in court.

Sars has opened a case against him for the contents of his controversial book, The President's Keeper's.

Sars argues that Pauw contravened tax laws by disclosing confidential taxpayer information.

Read: It's a criminal offence to discuss tax payers affairs: SARS

The book accuses President Jacob Zuma of tax evasion among other shocking revelations.

According to Pauw's lawyers, the Tax Administration Act only applies to Sars officials and their non-disclosure of taxpayer information.

The author adds that public interest will also form the basis of his team's legal defence.

Also read: Pauw questions why he was not charged after revealing Malema's tax affairs

He argues that the material revealed in the book was done so in the interest of the South African public as it pertains to the President's affairs.

Wits Law Professor James Grant agrees the public interest is a relevant primary legal defence.

It's not unusual for journalists to reveal taxpayers' information when it is in the public interest... The tax affairs of the President should certainly be exposed.

Jacques Pauw, author and veteran journalist

Have I disclosed confidential taxpayers' information? Yes of course I have. Have I contravened the Tax Administration Act? We believe I have not done so.

Jacques Pauw, author and veteran journalist

I am legally in possession of the material I published and the material is in the public interest.

Jacques Pauw, author and veteran journalist

I don't believe that Sars can hide behind the Tax Administration Act to conceal the dirty linen of Jacob Zuma, his friends and cronies.

Jacques Pauw, author and veteran journalist

I'm not particularly concerned about my safety. There's not much I can do.

Jacques Pauw, author and veteran journalist

The battle I'm going to fight in the future is a legal battle.

Jacques Pauw, author and veteran journalist

Listen to the critical discussion about the impending legal case:


This article first appeared on 702 : Public interest to form basis of legal defence in Sars court battle, Pauw says


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