The Special Court has issued a sentence of nine years to Chudamani Sharma, the former director general of the Inland Revenue Department (IRD), Lumba Dhwaj Mahat, the former chairman of the Tax Settlement Commission, and Umesh Prasad Dhakal, a member of the commission.
The court found them guilty of corruption in a case filed by the Commission for Investigation of Abuse of Authority (CIAA).
The bench, composed of Chairman of the Special Court Judge Srimanta Paudel and Judges Yamuna Bhattarai and Shaligram Koirala, earlier on June 1, had found Sharma, along with three other former officials of the Tax Settlement Commission, guilty of corruption in a tax evasion case.
In addition to the jail term, the Special Court has ordered the authorities to recover the misappropriated amount and impose a cash penalty totaling Rs 6 billion on Sharma. This is the largest penalty ever set by the judicial body in a corruption case.
On Tuesday, the court announced the duration of the sentence, with Mahat receiving nine years and one month, while the other two were sentenced to nine years in prison.
This high-profile corruption case, the largest ever prosecuted in the country, first reached the court in July 2017. Sharma was arrested that same year from his office following numerous complaints of misuse of authority and misappropriation of millions. He was released on November 29 after posting a bail amount of Rs 10 million as requested by the Special Court.
Another corruption case was filed against Sharma and his wife, Kalpana Uprety Sharma, in January 2018. The Commission for Investigation of Abuse of Authority (CIAA) filed the case, alleging that Sharma’s assets worth Rs 42.95 million were disproportionate to his lawful income. However, the court cleared them of the charges related to illegal asset accumulation.
The corruption case filed by the CIAA amounted to Rs 10.96 billion, accusing the three individuals of unlawfully providing tax discounts to taxpayers while serving in the commission, which was established nine years ago to resolve tax disputes.