In what many are calling “a targeted hit,” a popular beach club on the island of Mykonos was closed by Greek tax authorities for allegedly violating tax laws by not providing receipts to customers.
Jackie O’, a popular destination beach bar on Super Paradise Beach was shuttered for two days after a tax inspector claimed a receipt wasn’t issued to a patron for a sun-bed.
Co-owner Carsten Stehr fired back in a post on Facebook, criticizing authorities for not being able to address the issue in court, given the timing of the Friday afternoon raid.
He posted a copy of the receipt that was issued to the customer that contained a time stamp of 12:19pm, well before the officer’s raid.
In his post, which included an apology to patrons of the club for the inconvenience, Stehr strongly rejected the accusation and implied that the timing and punishment of the alleged infraction was intentional, since the owners could not respond and provide evidence to defend their position.
“We strongly reject their accusation, and penalty without being able to properly address the issue with the competent tax or judicial authority due to this unannounced inspection Friday afternoon,” Stehr said in a press release.
According to Greek law, an infraction such as tax evasion against an accused business owner must be appealed in court while it is open. The penalty (such as closure, in this case) is issued and the accused must wait until courts open to present evidence. Since the accusation and subsequent penalty happened on a Friday afternoon, the business owners must wait until Monday morning when courts re-open.
“The financial damage and damage to our reputation will be addressed Monday morning in court. We would like to note that the timing of the inspection insured that Jackie O’ could not address any competent authority before the weekend,” he continued.
“Such tactics belong in Banana republics and not in a democratically elected, representational democracy which should protect and nourish tax abiding citizens and businessmen,” he concluded.
Fellow business owners on the island agreed with Stehr, calling the government’s action a “targeted hit.”
Nikos M., a co-owner of three restaurants on the island who asked us not to share his last name out of fear of recrimination from the government slammed the tax authorities for the timing.
“Yes, do your job and ensure proper receipts are being issued,” Nikos said, but “in the year 2021, after barely surviving a pandemic and taking into account this establishment which has never before been in such violation, you must provide them the opportunity to defend themselves. The timing shows that this was clearly a targeted hit against Jackie O’, ironically the business establishment with the cleanest reputation on the island. It’s obviously an abuse of power and intentional. It was a targeted hit.”
Is The Pappas Post worth $5 a month for all of the content you read? On any given month, we publish dozens of articles that educate, inform, entertain, inspire and enrich thousands who read The Pappas Post. I’m asking those who frequent the site to chip in and help keep the quality of our content high — and free. Click here and start your monthly or annual support today. If you choose to pay (a) $5/month or more or (b) $50/year or more then you will be able to browse our site completely ad-free!