Greece using drones to crack down on tax evasion on popular Aegean islands

shutterstock 399749980

shutterstock 399749980

Greek authorities are now using drones to scan boats and catch tax evaders on the most popular Aegean islands.

The drones buzz over vessels that are running day trips in Greece to check whether operators are issuing legal receipts to their passengers.

The new initiative is being launched by finance ministry tax inspectors and the coast guard on one of Greece’s most popular islands, Santorini.

Based on data gathered from the drones, authorities were able to establish how many passengers were on board a ship at any time.

They can then cross-reference this number with receipts declared by the ship and on-site inspections.

“We used the drones for the first time on an experimental basis to monitor how many tourists were on board,” said an official at the Independent Authority for Public Revenue.

'The results were excellent', he added.

Nine tourist vessels that were checked by the drones were alleged to have not issued receipts totalling about 25,000 euros and their owners now face fines.

Tax authorities say they have increased inspections at holiday resorts over the summer this year.