MANILA (UPDATE) - Sen. Manny Pacquiao's camp is filing criminal charges against his former aide Jake Joson, who purportedly claimed the world boxing icon sought some P165 million in advance payment for a boxing match that did not push through.
A cyber libel complaint will be filed against Joson for creating "fabricated statements" about the details of Pacquiao's supposed match against Conor McGregor in Las Vegas, said Atty. Nikki de Vega, the senator's legal counsel and spokesperson.
"We categorically deny [Joson's statements]. Ito po ay likhang isip at hindi po ito totoo (These are fabrications and are not true)," she said in an online press conference.
"Walang legal personality si Jake Joson sa larangan ng boxing... Nagtataka kami kung saan nanggagaling ang ganung sinasabi."
(Jake Joson has no legal personality in the field of boxing... We are wondering where he got those statements.)
The case involving Pacquiao's deal with Paradigm Sports is being tackled in the United States, but Joson is not a signatory of any contract, the lawyer said.
"Hindi po totoo na siya ay business manager [ni Sen. Pacquiao]. At most is nakasama at kaibigan [ni Sen. Pacquiao]," De Vega said.
(It is not true that he is the business manager of Sen. Pacquiao. At most, he is a companion and friend of Sen. Pacquiao.)
Joson started joining Team Pacquiao's trips years ago, after the boxing champ helped him pay for his house and its amortization, the lawyer said.
A falling out between Pacquiao and Joson happened sometime last year after the senator flagged some irregularities allegedly committed by his long-time aide, she said.
"Kapag mali kay Sen. Manny, mali yun kahit matagal ka nang kakilala," she said.
(If Sen. Manny thinks you did something wrong, he won't tolerate it even though he has known you for a long time already.)
"Kapag may mali, may katiwalian ka nang ginagawa... hindi po uubra kay Sen. Manny kahit na matagal na ang kanilang pinagsamahan," she added.
(If you did something wrong, some irregularities... Sen. Manny won't let it pass even though you've been through a lot together already.)
De Vega refused to give more details about the Pacquiao-Joson spat, but noted that the senator would also file estafa and syndicated estafa complaints against his former aide.
Pacquiao confronted Joson about the alleged irregularity last year, but the senator decided to file formal charges after his former aide supposedly began spewing false statements to the media earlier this week, she said.
When sought for comment about the complaints set to be filed against him, Joson said: "By all means, bring it on."
Joson said he would file counter charges against Pacquiao for allegedly failing to reimburse several advance payments and other costs related to his boxing matches.
"Double yung ikakaso ko sa kaniya, so never ending yung kaso," he said in a text message to reporters.
(I will file twice as much cases against him, so it will be a never-ending case.)
Joson said he has tapped lawyer Karen Jimeno, who was part of the defense team of the late Chief Justice Renato Corona, to handle his cases against the world boxing icon.