High court rules on porn VAT

BRUSSELS - Sex shops that show movies in cubicles are not entitled to charge their customers at a lower sales tax rate meant for cinemas, the European Union high court ruled yesterday.

BRUSSELS - Sex shops that show movies in cubicles are not entitled to charge their customers at a lower sales tax rate meant for cinemas, the European Union high court ruled yesterday.

The court said Belgium was right in 2004 to recoup almost R512000 in unpaid value added taxes from the "Erotic Centre", a sex shop in the city of Ghent.

The store charged customers only a six percent VAT, not the usual 21 percent, because it claimed its cubicles were actually cinemas. Culture, sports and entertainment venues are taxed at reduced rate.

The sex shop case came to the high court after an appeal court asked for a ruling on tax exemptions. - Sapa-AP

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