Manny Pacquiao hails high court’s TRO in tax case
GENERAL SANTOS CITY, Philippines—Sarangani Representative Manny Pacquiao hailed the Supreme Court’s issuance of temporary restraining order stopping an order from the Court of Tax Appeals last month requiring him to post a cash bond of P3.2 billion or surety bond worth P4.9 billion.
“First, I praise God for giving me and my wife the courage and patience to overcome the problem brought about by the tax case. Second, I thank and I praise the Supreme Court for living up to its role as bulwark of justice and guardian of laws in this country,” Pacquiao said.
Aside from the relief from posting such a huge bond in connection with his tax case, the high court also stopped the Bureau of Internal Revenue from collecting P2 billion in taxes from Pacquiao.
“The Supreme Court once again has shown its independence and deep sense of justice by coming out with the TRO. This, including its landmark decisions on DAP and PDAF, restored the people’s faith in the country’s justice system,” Pacquiao said before he flew to Manila on Friday morning.
On July 24, Pacquiao filed a 75-page petition seeking to reverse tax court’s order.
In their petition, the boxer and his wife, Sarangani Vice Governor Jinkee Pacquiao, claimed the requirement was “effectively an impossible condition” as their net worth was only P1.18 billion.
The couple accused the Court of Tax Appeals of grave abuse of discretion in requiring them to post the amount within 30 days.
They claimed in the same petition that the BIR violated their right to due process “in presuming the correctness of a fraud assessment without evidentiary support other than the issuance of a fraud assessment themselves.”
“The Supreme Court’s order was a big relief to us,” Pacquiao said, adding that the tax case bothered him and his wife since it was filed more than a year ago.
Pacquiao said the freeze on his assets also led him to resort to borrowings to sustain the operation of his businesses and pursue his relief operations among victims of Supertyphoon Yolanda (Haiyan).
He said the issuance of the TRO virtually took the burden off him, giving him a chance to focus on his November 23 fight against American boxer Chris Algieri.
Pacquiao’s training camp is expected to kick off on the 3rd week of September here in Gensan.
Pacquiao flew to Manila on Friday morning to await the Aug. 25 Philippine Basketball Association drafting.
He would fly to Macau, China on August 26 to join in the kick off ceremony of the Pacquiao-Algieri six-city press tour.
He is expected to be back in the country by September 6.