CHICAGO (jGLi) – In the incredible search for truth by the Philippine Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR), it resulted in an unintended consequence – its unlikely alliance with Filipinos’ enemy No. 1 – American boxing champion Floyd Mayweather, Jr.
I am very sure, I am speaking with authority, that not a single Filipino with a drop of Filipino blood in his vein as well as non-Filipino blood with the likes of Sri Lankan naturalized Filipino Ronnie Nathanielsz has ever been endeared to Mr. Mayweather, after insulting and defaming the Filipino race and their Pambansang Kamao (Filipino Punch) Manny “Pacman” Pacquiao that is now the subject of a $5-Million defamation suit in the United States District Court in Las Vegas, Nevada.
You see, dear readers, when the BIR noticed that there was a sudden drop of taxes being paid by our Sarangani Congressman from 125-million pesos (US$2.9-million) in 2008 to 7-million pesos (US$167,000), the BIR saw a red-flag, saying “hindi naman siya nalalaos, lalo nga siya sumikat pero bakit bumagsak ang income niya?” (He has never flopped and his star even shone brighter, why did his income take a nose-dive?”)
As of this writing, ABS-CBN TV Patrol is reporting that Mr. Pacquiao was dislodged from the country’s No. 2 taxpayer and is now down to 135th in the BIR report of 500 individual taxpayers in 2010. Pacquiao was even upstaged by Filipino entertainment Director Carlo J. Caparas, who paid 65-million pesos (US$1.5-million).
Curiously, the same report could not find the names of Jaime Zobel de Ayala, Fernando Zobel de Ayala, Henry Sy, Sr., Manny Pangilinan and Lucio Tan, who round up the list of Filipino billionaires in Forbes Magazine in the Philippines’ 500 individual taxpayers.
DID MANNY OVERPAY HIS TAXES?
This is my hunch: it was possible that Manny Pacquiao just recently found out that when he paid his taxes in 2008, his payment included his earnings outside the Philippines such that he was “double-taxed!” If this is so, then the BIR should review Manny’s tax payment in 2008 and even before that if Manny was taxed on earnings he was paid outside the Philippines.
If this checks out, Manny should be refunded of his over tax payments plus interest and the BIR should apologize to Manny and stop hounding him.
Otherwise, if Manny’s tax payments in 2008 all came from his Philippine earnings, then, the BIR has every reason to demand financial documents from Manny.
Manny should remember this: if he goes on a defensive, instead of cooperating by submitting the financial documents demanded from him, Manny will only be enriching his lawyers.
Nobody can escape the wrath of a taxman. Just ask Al Capone, who managed to dodge the mass murder charge but not his tax charges!
In the same way that Manny cannot hide his financial documents from Mayweather being demanded from him in Manny’s US$5-million defamation suit against the unbeaten boxing world champion in Las Vegas court for accusing Manny of taking performance enhancing drugs (PED’s).
Invoking the “clean hands” principle, Mayweather has been asking the court to compel Manny to provide him Manny’s U.S. Federal Income Tax Returns from 2008 up to the 2010 and his other endorsement contracts. But Manny is stalling.
Mayweather’s lawyers led by Mark G. Tratos say that Mayweather needs to have information of Manny’s earnings in 2008 – the year before Manny was defamed – and the 2009 and 2010. Then, if it is shown that Manny’s earnings dipped by the year of the defamation and by the following year, then, Manny could be entitled to general and special damages.
Mayweather added, however, if it is shown that Manny earned the same income or even more, then, Manny is not entitled to any monetary damages.
PRIVILEGED, BURDENSOM AND OPPRESIVE
Manny’s lawyers, led by David Marroso, however, argue that the financial information, including U.S. federal and other tax returns, contracts in endorsement/sponsorship deals, receipts from his boxing matches, checking, savings bank and other financial accounts, “purses,” promotional contracts, pay-per-view, HBO box office distributions, contracts or agreements with public relations firm, news clipping service or advertising agency from 2003 to present, being demanded by Mayweather, are “[n]either relevant to any material issue; and are “privileged, confidential, and/or protected by the right of privacy,” and are “unduly burdensome and oppressive; vague, ambiguous and overbroad requir[ing] him [Manny] and his agents, employees, associates, affiliates, partners, joint ventures, representatives, attorneys or any other persons or entities acting on his behalf to produce” those documents.
If Judge Larry R. Hicks rules for Mayweather, the BIR will benefit from the ruling if Manny will provide the court his earnings from the Philippines, where Manny, according to court documents, owns a rooster farm, a boxing promotions company, basketball team called MP Warriors, a lotto outlet, movie appearances, CD albums, an “exclusive talent for GMA 7,” sells his likeness in video games, endorsements deals with Nike, Alaxan, McDonald’s Xtreme Magic Sing, PLDT, San Miguel Beer, Café Puro; US$21-M earnings from his fights against Erik Morales (US$2-M, Jan. 2006), US$1-M against Oscar Larios (July 2006), US$2-M against Jorge Solis (April 2007), US$2-M against Marco Antonio Barrera (Oct. 2007), US$11-M against Oscar de la Hoya (Dec. 2008); share in the PPV against Morales, which generated US$26-M; US$5.2-M share from Pacquiao-De la Hoya PPV; US$1-M TV commercial for Hewlett- Packard Veer 4G Smartphone and vegetable produce under brand Pacquiao Produce in Texas.
While records also mentioned that Manny lost US$180,000 from his associate who forged his checks, records did not mention Manny’s losses in sabongs (cockfights) and other bad investments nor mentioned his income as a Congressman and his pork barrel!
As soon as the court untangles the messy financial picture of Manny, it will also rule on another messy records being demanded by Mayweather from Manny – the medical records, including names of doctors, sparring partners, physical trainers of Manny during the past 10 years – even after Manny already gave up the results of his medical records from the Nevada Athletic Commission and Texas Department of Licensing, where “Pacquiao tested negative for every banned substance on every single test.” (firstname.lastname@example.org)