Henares: Only P1.1-M of Pacquiao deposits garnished

by Jon Carlos Rodriguez, ABS-CBNnews.com

Posted at Nov 26 2013 08:13 PM | Updated as of Nov 27 2013 08:08 AM

But Pacquiao insists it's not just 2 bank accounts

MANILA (2nd UPDATE) – Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) Commissioner Kim Henares on Tuesday said only two bank accounts of boxing icon and Sarangani Rep. Manny Pacquiao were garnished in relation to his P2.2 billion tax case.

Henares said that when the BIR issued a warrant of garnishment on Pacquiao's bank accounts, only two of 22 banks responded.

She said the 2 accounts have P300,000 and P800,000 or a total of P1.1 million.

“Tingin ko, sa laki ng kinita niya at sa dami ng pera niya, ang P1.1 million ay napakaliit so hindi natin alam kung nagsisinungaling ang bangko or what,” Henares told “TV Patrol.”

Henares said it's possible Pacquiao withdrew his money before the warrant of distraint and levy was issued in July or his money is deposited in offshore accounts.

Pacquiao, meanwhile, denied that only two banks were issued warrants of garnishments by the BIR.

"Hindi po dalawang bangko. Marami, marami. Pati yung HSBC, biro mo. BDO, Metrobank, Chinabank, apat na iyan. Paano magigiging dalawa lang? Sila ang tumawag mismo. Mga bangko ang tumawag mismo. Sinisingil tayo ng P2.2-billion above assets and liability," he said.

He said even his wife's accounts were frozen.

Pacquiao also claimed that they gave copies of his tax records in the US to the BIR. "Ilang kopya na binigay namin. Nagbigay talaga. Kasi, pwede ba naming ipa-delay iyan? Problema iyan pag 'di nabigay, 'di ba? Talagang nag-provide kami."

He said he has not yet talked personally to BIR chief Henares. "Hindi ko pa nakausap (in person) si Henares. Okay naman ako, wala naman ako problema."

"Nagpapakumbaba ako, nakikiusap," he said. "Hindi naman ako kriminal, hindi ko naman tatalikuran yan kung may problema man. Nakapag- appeal na iyung abogado ko."

Pacquiao's lawyer Remegio Rojas also said all of his clients' accounts in other banks were frozen because of the notice of garnishment.

“Si Congressman Manny Pacquiao ay hindi na maka-withdraw sa lahat ng bangko sa Pilipinas dahil nga sinasabi mayroong notice of garnishment na in-issue ang BIR,” Rojas said.

Rojas said some of Pacquiao’s friends have voluntarily lent him money to keep him afloat.

For his recent bout with Brandon Rios including pay-per-view revenues, Pacquiao was estimated to earn about $30 million (about P1.3 billion), but Rojas said it will take time before Pacquiao gets paid.

Tax return

Henares said the BIR has been asking the lawmaker since 2010 to provide them a copy of his tax return filed before the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) in the US.

“Since 2010, pinapa-explain namin sa kanya kasi dapat nire-report niya ‘yung total na kinita niya. Dapat ipakita rin niya ‘yung total na binayad niya sa Amerika na buwis. Dalawang taon kami nag-antay, hindi siya makapagpakita ng mga dokumento na ‘yan,” Henares said.

“Ang sumulat sa amin ay ‘yung Top Rank na sinabi niya na siya ay nagbayad sa IRS. Hindi naman ‘yun katanggap-tanggap na papeles, ang kailangan naming papeles ay ‘yung return na finile niya sa Internal Revenue Service ng Amerika,” she added.

She denied that the order was issued when Pacquiao was preparing for his fight against Rios, saying it was the boxer who filed an appeal in October.

There is also no truth to criticism that Pacquiao is being “singled out,” Henares said, noting that the BIR has been lenient in serving penalties to give way to his boxing matches.

“Kaya naging dalawang taon dahil every time may gagawin kami ay may laban siya, ayaw naman namin istorbohin kapag may laban siya dahil baka kami ang sisihin kapag natalo siya. Kaya na-delay ng na-delay, eh hindi naman pwede i-delay ‘yan ng unlimited period of time,” Henares said in a separate interview on dzMM.

Pacquiao, meanwhile, said his camp already submitted a copy of his tax return, but the BIR wanted the original copy from the IRS, which he said his camp could not acquire.

According to the IRS website, getting an exact copy of a previously filed and processed tax return requires completing a form and mailing it to the IRS.

“If you need an exact copy of a previously filed and processed tax return and all attachments (including Form W-2), you should complete Form 4506 (PDF), Request for Copy of Tax Return, and mail it to the address listed in the instructions, along with a $50.00 fee (fee change effective 10/1/2013) for each tax return requested. The check or money order for the fee should be made payable to the ‘United States Treasury,’ also enter your SSN or EIN and ‘Form 4506 request’ on your check or money order. Copies are generally available for returns filed in the current and past six years. Copies of jointly filed tax returns may be requested by either spouse and only one signature is required. Allow 60 calendar days to receive your copies,” the IRS website said.

Henares said the BIR received a letter from Pacquiao's US promoter Top Rank Boxing verifying that the boxer paid his taxes, but the agency does not honor it as a valid document.

Appeal

Pacquiao urged the BIR to lift the warrant of garnishment as his businesses are being affected.

He also said he was forced to borrow at least P1 million for his needs as well as the relief goods that he promised to give to the survivors of typhoon "Yolanda."

"Ang hiling ko lang i-lift ‘yung garnishment dahil kawawa ‘yung mga trabahente ko dito, mayroon akong mga 1,000 na pinapasweldo, nahihirapan na mapasweldo sila. Hindi ko naman tatalikuran ‘yan, saan naman ako magtatago? Haharapin ko kung may dapat harapin,” he said.

Pacquiao and his wife Jinkee have also appealed the BIR's order by filing a petition through their lawyers before the Court of Tax Appeals (CTA). Based on the petition, Pacquiao wants to stop the BIR from collecting the P2.2 billion in supposed tax deficiencies.