APPELLATE - WHITE-COLLAR/TAX - SUCCESSFUL APPEALS AGAINST RETROACTIVE TAXATION
In a publicly anticipated decision concerning a leading regional businessman and his companies, the Appeal Court in Belgrade, accepted our appeals and quashed a highly controversial first instance decision that sought to impose retroactive tax obligation on the defendants.
The office submitted written appeals on behalf of the clients in December 2016 against a first instance ruling which prospectively held the defendants liable for tax on the basis of the retroactive application of the law. The Appeals Court, in a strong judgment published publicly, accepted the arguments of defence counsel Zdenko Tomanovic and quashed the first instance decision for violations of the law and severe violations of procedure and finding that the first instance judge violated Article 6 of the European Convention on Human Rights by asking the executive and Parliament to rule on the issue of the tax obligation, by giving retroactive opinions, rather than applying the law applicable to the issue, which the court is obliged to do.
The Appeal Court thus ordered a retrial on the isolated issue of tax.
Also, in the same decision, the Appeal Court affirmed the acquittal for other charges brought against our clients, giving these decisions a res judicata effect and bringing the trials to an end.
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