Jakarta – In an apparent case of identity theft, a family in Tamansari, West Jakarta, have just learned they are recorded as the owners of several luxury cars and that substantial taxes are owed on one of the vehicles. The only problem is that they live in a narrow alley through which no cars can pass.
The family was made aware of the fact after officials from the West Jakarta Vehicle Document Registration Center (Samsat) and the Jakarta Tax and Levy Agency (BPRD) came to their house to collect the overdue taxes.
Adul Manaf, 64, the head of the family, is recorded as being the owner of a Mercedes Benz, while his wife is apparently the owner of a Toyota Harrier.
His son, Zulkifly, is recorded as the owner of Bentley Continental GT, for which taxes amounting to Rp 108 million (US$7,667) have been owed since Sept. 30 last year.
The family said they did not know anything about the cars. "I was shocked [...] I don't have the money to afford such luxury cars as my house is small," Abdul said as quoted by kompas.com.
He claimed that he had been the victim of identity theft, saying that two years ago a stranger had asked for a copy of the identity cards of his neighbors in exchange for some basic needs. There had been no talk of car purchases, he added, noting that it was the last time he had spoken with the man.
"At first he said he would buy the basic needs for me if I gave him a copy of my ID card. In the end he only gave me Rp 125,000," he said.
The Samsat officers have asked Abdul's family to block their ownership of the luxury cars so the real owners will have to pay the vehicle ownership transfer fees (BBN-KB).
Abdul is not the first victim of identity theft related to luxury car ownership. The authorities have found two similar cases in the past two months.
Ilham Firdaus (23), another Tamansari resident, was recorded to have evaded taxes on his Ferrari car for a year, amounting to Rp 69.4 million. Ilham, who also lives in a narrow alley, said he had lost his ID card and he believed it may have been used illegally.
The second case involved Aliyah and her husband, Andi, residents of Grogol Petamburan district in West Jakarta, whose identities were used by their non-Jakarta resident boss to purchase a Jaguar and a Porsche Cayman, on the latter of which was owed Rp 28.2 million in taxes.
BPRD Jakarta acting head Syafruddin said the body would work alongside the Jakarta Police's traffic division to investigate the cases. (ars)