Taxman wins R352m court case against businessman Mark Lifman

“However, the companies withdrew the application for leave to appeal two days before the hearing.”

As Sars resumed the execution process, Lifman launched yet another urgent application to stop it. This was dismissed with “a punitive costs order”.  Lifman complained that Sars officials had mistreated him.

“Lifman alleged that he had on more than one occasion complained that Sars officials are acting in an untoward and subjective manner,” Baartman said.

But Baartman said Lifman could not “elevate a complaint about ‘treatment received’ to a ground of review”. After the 2015/2016 tax assessment, Sars found that Lifman’s entities owed more than R350m.

“[Lifman and his companies] did not lodge any objection …”  said Baartman. “Instead, it seems that the initial dissatisfaction was about treatment received which [the companies] have belatedly and opportunistically sought to raise as an objection against the assessments.

“That is not permissible; it follows that on this ground, the application must also fail. The assessment are undisputed, final, due and payable.”