Fiscal evasion part of economic crime
Fiscal evasion, part of economic crime one of the most prominent problems in the country’s economic development remains the challenge facing criminal offenses related to tax evasion in the economy. In contemporary society, the increase in criminal offenses in tax evasion is considered an obstacle to economic development, economic order, and the legal system. States impose taxes to finance their budgets. Their payment and collection are of fundamental importance for the state budget.
Through the collection of taxes, the government carries out its financial-budgetary activity. Without them, it is impossible to meet the economic needs of society. Article 180 of the Criminal Code of the Republic of Albania provides that: Concealment or avoidance of payment of tax liabilities, through non-submission of documents or non-declaration of necessary data, according to the legislation in force, submission of forged documents, or false statements or information, for material gain, for themselves or others. , through the incorrect calculation of the amount of tax, tax, or contribution, constitutes a criminal offense and is punishable by a fine or imprisonment of up to three years.
When this offense is committed with the purpose of concealing or evading the payment of a tax liability worth more than five million ALL, it is punishable by imprisonment of two to five years. When this offense is committed with the purpose of concealing or evading the payment of a tax liability worth more than eight million ALL, it is punishable by imprisonment of four to eight years.
While with the law no. 135/2015, dated 5.12.2015, article 180 / a was added with this content: Failure to issue the tax coupon, receipt, or tax invoice by the person who must give the tax coupon, permit, or tax invoice when the administrative measure has been taken beforehand is punishable by a fine or imprisonment of up to one year.
Exercising an illegal or unregistered commercial activity in the tax authorities, not equipped with a fiscal cash register, according to the legal provisions in force, or giving orders contrary to the law, in order not to issue a tax coupon, receipt or tax invoice, when taken the administrative measure previously is punishable by up to three years in prison.
The object of the criminal offense of concealment of income is the legal relations established to ensure the normal functioning of the tax, which are determined by law for the financing of the state budget, and which are specifically protected by criminal law through criminal acts and interactions. Since the general interest is violated, all state bodies must protect the violation of public good and limit the spread of tax evasion.
The objective side of the criminal offense is committed with active actions and omissions. Every act or omission is deliberate as the primary purpose is to conceal income.
The criminal offense subject can be any individual, private person, entrepreneur, etc., who is obliged according to the law of account.
To pay to the state coffers the taxes and duties that weigh on his income.
Subjectively, this offense is committed with intent and with justifiable intent, as the criminal crimes provided for in Articles 180 and 180 / a may not be committed negligently. Concealment of tax liabilities by not submitting tax returns, giving false information or data, submission of forged documents are actions and interactions that require special financial knowledge and are done with the direct purpose of material gain.
Economic crime is not only a legal category but above all; it is a social phenomenon.
It aims to gain material or other benefits regardless of legal and physical form and value. Fiscal evasion represents an economic, social, and criminal issue that undermines society’s fabric and moral structure. Fiscal evasion as part of financial crime causes loss to a large number of people (partners, shareholders, employees, individuals, competitors) and even a state that has to bear a heavy financial burden or suffer significant loss of income, devalue the economy, and cause a loss of confidence in the economic system itself.
The cost of economic crime is estimated to be between ten and thirty-five times higher than “traditional” crimes. Some of the most common methods businesses use to avoid or manipulate tax reporting, and tax evasion are:
-Employing a person without a contractor with a contract with hidden clauses
-Reporting the lowest income to them
-Do not pay obligations, taxes, and excise
-Giving and receiving bribes
– Failure to issue invoices
-Payment manipulation of VAT
-Use accounting tricks to pay fewer taxes
The factors that affect the development of tax evasion and consequently damage the economy of our country are:
1) Economic factors
a) The economic situation promotes economic crime. Due to fluctuations in the financial system over the years, many individuals and businesses benefit from this situation by showing false balance or manipulating account books.
b) Insufficiency of internal controls. The reason for committing economic crimes is the lack of internal controls in a business, keeping accurate and up-to-date account books.
2) Psycho-social factors
a) Business ego. Business activity in all economic systems is characterized by the push for efficiency, power, and maximum productivity. These three motivating forces become the cause that they must also commit a crime to help them achieve their goal to achieve specific goals.
b) Employee ego. The hope for a better career and higher income is two of the main reasons for economic crime.
3) Legal factors
a) The justice system. Justice in our country is not very functional. Since many individuals and businesses enjoy power and money, they manage to extend their influence to the judicial process by declaring themselves innocent or dismissing the case for lack of evidence.