BIR reminds Pacquiao: Pay tax due from Rios purse

By Alvin Elchico, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Nov 27 2013 08:41 PM | Updated as of Nov 28 2013 11:58 PM

MANILA (UPDATE) – Aside from money in the bank, Sarangani lawmaker and boxing champion Manny Pacquiao is also in danger of losing his luxury vehicles, homes, and other real property assets.

The Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) has imposed a lien on his properties to fulfill his alleged P2.2 billion tax liability.

A lien alerts buyers of these properties of government's claim or the owners' liabilities.

BIR Commissioner Kim Henares explained that the tax bureau has only seized P1.1 million from Pacquiao's bank accounts, short of the actual tax liability, which is why the BIR also ran after Pacquiao's other assets.

Henares warned Pacquiao that government will eventually have to auction the properties to meet the P2.2 billion liability.

“Normally, we gave them time to come up with the money before we take the next step, which is auctioning and bidding it out,”

Even Pacquiao's prize for defeating Brandon Rios over the weekend can be seized by the BIR to cover for the liability.

But first, Henares reminded the boxing champion to pay the 32 percent tax on his recent win.

With an $18 million purse or about P792 million, government tax amounts to more than P250 million.

“Kung dumating doon sa bangko, technically dapat ‘yung bangko i-hold ‘yan. File-in niya ng tama ang income tax return niya at magbayad siya ng tamang buwis kasi kung hindi niya gawin ‘yan, papatong ng papatong ang problema niya,” Henares said.

But even if Pacquiao submits the needed certification from the US Internal Revenue Service at this point, Henares said the BIR's decision is already final and Pacquiao will have to bring the matter to court.

“Kung talagang finile niya at binayad niya, wala naman siyang dapat maging problema, dalawang taon namin siyang hinantay at wala siyang naibigay. ‘Di ba napakasimpleng problema nu’n?” she said.

Henares denied speculations that politics has something to do with Pacquiao's predicament.

She said all Filipinos earning abroad can pay the income tax there.

But if it’s below the Philippine tax rate of 32 percent, the remainder should be paid here in the country.

If the tax paid is above the 32 percent, the taxpayer will not get a refund.