Ever bought a rare vintage Ferrari for $12.1 million and tried to get the government to let you import it from Italy duty-free, only to have that pesky Customs & Border Protection come along and ruin everything by making you pay a 2.5% tariff?
…yeah, us neither, but it happened to Rob Walton.
Rob bought a 1957 Ferrari 250 Testa Rossa in 2009 for $12.1 million, then the world record price for a car sold at auction. His lawyer tried to get CBP to allow the car to be imported to the U.S. duty-free, as a special type of collector’s item. Unfortunately for Rob, CBP was apparently not impressed by the lawyer’s argument, and issued a ruling stating that the Ferrari was to be imported as a regular old motor vehicle, subject to an import tariff of 2.5%.
On a car purchased for $12.1 million, the 2.5% tariff amounts to nearly $303,000. Luckily for Rob, he collects about $25,000 a minute in Walmart dividends, so he was able to take care of it by merely owning Walmart stock for about 12 minutes. Back in the world of normal people, there are Walmart associates like John Paul Ashton, who is forced to rely on food stamps because he doesn’t earn enough at Walmart to feed his two kids.
Here’s Rob and his wife Melani enjoying the $12.1 million car on the open road. John Paul has to walk 45 minutes to work—do you think Rob and Melani might be able to give him a ride sometime?
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