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Crimes Against The Fiscal And Economic Interests Of The State


Article 343- Crimes Committed In Breach of Special Legislation.
(1)    Where a crime is committed in breach of legislation issued by an authorized public organ in accordance with the law and duly published in the Federal Negarit Gazeta or in the legal gazettes of the regional states, concerning the control or protection of the fiscal or economic interests of the State, the punishment shall be determined in accordance with the principles of this Code.
(2)    All braches classed as petty offences or, in default or such classification, all breaches of mandatory or prohibitive provisions of this kind where the damage caused by such breaches does not exceed ten thousand Birr, are punishable as provided in the part of this Code regarding petty offences.

Article 344- Kind and Extent of Penalties.
(1)    Where the pertinent legislation makes no explicit reference to a crime defined in this Code, the Court shall pass sentence of simple imprisonment or fine, fixed in accordance with the provisions, and within the general limits, of this Code (Arts. 90-92 and Arts. 106 and 107).
(2)    Where the degree of guilt is of exceptional gravity and the crime involves large sums of money or value of things, or where the accused makes a profession of such crimes within the meaning of Article 90 or this Code, the court may impose a fine not exceeding one hundred thousand Birr, in addition to the forfeiture of the gain derived from the crime.
(3)    The general provisions relating to preventive, protective and prohibitive measures, and those relating to collateral measures of publicity and information shall be applied wherever the Court thinks necessary.

Article 345- Collateral Penalties Relating to Taxes and Dues.
The punishment prescribed for breaches of laws on taxes and other dues shall not prevent the application of penalties that may be imposed in accordance with the appropriate legislation on taxes and dues not paid within the proper time.


Article 346- Illicit Traffic in Gold, Currencies or Foreign Exchange.
Whoever, apart from cases coming under the provisions relating to crimes against currency (Title V below), buys, imports or exports, accepts in trust, deposits, exchanges, sells or offers for sale without authorization or contrary to laws, regulations or rules, gold or any currency, whether national or foreign, the dealings with or rates of which are subject to limitation, restriction or measures of control or protection,
is punishable with rigorous imprisonment not exceeding ten years, and fine not exceeding fifty thousand Birr, without prejudice to the confiscation or the subject matter of the crime.

Article 347- Illicit Traffic in Precious Minerals.
Whoever violates, as defined in the preceding Article, provisions or regulations on forbidden or unlawful traffic in precious minerals such s gold, platinum, uranium or any other similar minerals, as well as in precious stones,
Is punishable under Article 346.

Article 348- Dealings Endangering the Credit of the State’s Finance.
Whoever, with the object of damaging the credit of the State’s finance, or knowingly running the risk of damaging it:
(a)    causes or incites the withdrawal of funds from banks or from other institutions legally bound to make payment into banks, to bring about a fall of value in the national currency; or brings about a depreciation, through widespread selling, in the value of bonds or securities; or
(b)    obstructs subscription to or the purchase of such funds, bonds or securities;
is punishable with rigorous imprisonment not exceeding ten years, and fine not exceeding fifty thousand Birr; or where the crime has caused or could cause a serious consequence, with rigorous imprisonment not exceeding twenty years.

Article 349- Unlawful Refusal to Pay Public Taxes or Dues.
(1)    Whoever, being duly ordered to pay the taxes or dues prescribed by law, whether in kind or in cash, and validly assessed by the competent authority, refuses to pay, though able so to do, taxes on land, property or different kinds of income, or any other due or tax whatsoever.
Is punishable, without prejudice to the payment of the tax or due, with simple imprisonment for not less than one year and fine.
(2)    Where the refusal is accompanied by threats, violence, or assault, by the display or use of arms, or by disorder or revolt, the punishment prescribed by the relevant provisions shall apply concurrently (Art. 85).

Article 350- Incitement to Refusal to pay Taxes.
(1)    Whoever incites another, by acts, gifts, speeches, threats, or in any other way, to refuse to pay the taxes or dues prescribed by law,
Is punishable with simple imprisonment from one year to three years and fine.
(2)    Where the case is more serious as a result of the spread of the crime, the punishment shall be rigorous imprisonment from three years to ten years and fine.
Where the crime is punishable under a more severe provision, such as incitement to riot or to the overthrow of authority, the punishment may be aggravated in accordance with the relevant provision prescribed for concurrent crimes (Art. 85).

Article 351- Endangering Sources of Revenue.
(1)    Whoever, with intent to save himself or another, whether an individual or a juridical person, from the payment in full or in part of dues, taxes or charges due to the Government in accordance with the law:
(a)    knowingly supplies to the competent authorities false information about the property, capital or income subject to taxation, or about any other relevant circumstances in connection with the assessment of the taxes or dues; or
(b)    in any other way, be it by fraud, concealment, or false returns or fictitious operations, or by any other means, knowingly misleads such authorities,
is punishable with rigorous imprisonment not exceeding ten years and fine not exceeding one hundred thousand Birr.
(2) Any official or employee of an authority who improperly prevents the payment of taxes or dues, or reduces the amount thereof,
Is punishable for abuse of authority (Art. 407).
(3)    Where the criminal has acted in circumstances which constitute another crime, in particular misrepresentation or forgery, the provisions regarding these crimes shall apply concurrently (Art. 85).

Article 352- Contraband.
(1)    Whoever intentionally:
(a)    brings into or takes out of Ethiopia, without paying the duty or taxes fixed by law goods, property, objects or things produced by a factory or by handicraft;
(b)    accepts for sale, stores or offers goods or property, knowing that they are introduced into the country in the illegal manner specified in (a) above; or
(c)    circulates, domestically manufactured objects or products that are restricted from circulation unless the taxes due on them are paid,
is punishable with fine not exceeding then thousand Birr, or with simple imprisonment, in addition to the forfeiture of the objects, means, and the fruits of the crime, subject to the rights of third parties in good faith who have no part whatsoever in the crime (Art. 140).
(2)    Where the crime is committed by threats, violence, fraud or in group, the punishment shall be rigorous imprisonment not exceeding ten years, in addition to the forfeiture of the object.
(3)    Evasion of customs duty of an isolated character comes within the scope of the provisions relating to petty offences (Art. 784).

Article  353- Crimes against the National Economy and State Monopolies.
(1)    Whoever, apart from the cases especially specified above or petty infringements punishable under the Code of Petty Offences (Art. 784-790), intentionally violates the provisions concerning:
(a)    the importation, exportation, storage or transport of objects, products or materials subject to prohibition, license, control or duties; or
(b)    the exploitation of natural resources of the county, whether of the soil, of the sub-soil or their products, of electric power, water, forests, minerals, game or wild animals; or
(c)    the exploitation of wild animals or their products, or the hunting or killing of such animals; or
(d)    the settlement or execution of other activities in restricted forests, in parks or in reserved areas; or
(e)    a monopoly whether granted by way of concession or controlled by the State; or
(f)    the organization of State banks or State undertakings, or the granting of concessions, or the operation and supervision of banks or undertakings, whether commercial or industrial or factories establishments of any kind,
is punishable, where the crime does not come under a specific provision prescribing a more severe penalty, with simple imprisonment or fine, in addition to the forfeiture of the subject matter of the crime and the withdrawal of any license and work certificate, and the suspension or closing down of any business.
(2)    Whoever violates laws issued regarding the collection, transportation, transference, exportation, importation or exploitation of genetic resources,
is punishable, according to the circumstances of the case, with simple imprisonment for not less than one year, or with rigorous imprisonment not exceeding ten years and fine from ten thousand to thirty thousand Birr.
(3)    Whoever, contrary to law, hunts or kills endemic animals; or possesses, collects, transports, transfers or exports endemic animals or plants or their products,
Is punishable, according to the circumstances of the case, with simple imprisonment for not less than one year, or with rigorous imprisonment not exceeding twelve years and fine from ten thousand to one hundred thousand Birr.
(4)    Where one of the acts in this Article is committed negligently, the punishment shall be fine not exceeding five thousand Birr, or, according to the circumstances and gravity of the case, simple imprisonment not exceeding six months.

Article 354- Aggravation to the Crime.
(1)    The fine shall not exceed two hundred thousand Birr, and the punishment of deprivation of liberty shall be rigorous imprisonment not exceeding fifteen years, in addition to the forfeiture of the subject matter of the crime, in the case of trafficking, speculation or illicit dealings, of contraband or of other crimes involving large amounts of money, or where the criminal has mad a profession of such trafficking or prohibited practices.
(2)    Where the crime specified in sub-article (1) is committed by a juridical person, it is punishable in accordance with Article 90 of this Code.