Johannesburg - There is a legal expectation of foreigners to
declare their money when they enter South Africa, the SA Revenue Service (Sars)
said on Thursday.
"For foreign nationals there is no limitation (on the
amount they can bring in), but there is a legal expectation to declare it at
customs," Sars spokesperson Adrian Lackay said.
"You are then issued with a form in case you encounter
any difficulties when you are in the country... This is a legal obligation on the
Lackay was issuing a warning after R1.9m was reportedly
stolen from an investment banker linked to the Arab royal family. It was
apparently taken from the safe in his Sandton hotel room.
According to a report on Wednesday, Farid Alshabbar said he
went out for dinner on Saturday night, and when he returned to his hotel room
an hour later to fetch more money it was gone.
"My money was gone. They were so stupid they left the
1kg gold pellets (worth $46 000 or about R372 160) inside the safe,"
Alshabbar was quoted as saying.
He suspected that hotel staff were responsible. A porter has
since been arrested and police were still looking for the hotel's head of
Lackay said Sars had since met with Alshabbar and his
"What is of concern is when South Africa has a
well-regulated banking system... there should be little need for someone to
carry large amounts of money on their person."
When people carry large amounts of money it could arouse
suspicion, he said.