Ampatuan lawyer charged with tax evasion

Posted at 11/29/2012 1:23 PM | Updated as of 11/29/2012 8:13 PM

MANILA, Philippines - A lawyer of Andal Ampatuan, Jr. was charged with tax evasion before the Department of Justice (DOJ) for "willful failure to supply correct and accurate information in his income tax return (ITR), deliberate failure to file his value-added tax (VAT) returns, and failure to register for VAT" in violation of the National Internal Revenue Code of 1997.

Atty. Arnel Cortez Manaloto was assessed a total tax liability of P27.56 million for taxable year 2011. Also charged was Erwin Sicangco Carreon, the certified public accountant who examined and audited the book of accounts and other accounting records of Manaloto.

Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) Commissioner Kim Henares said Manaloto "deliberately pegged his income for TY 2011 at P1.495 million" despite his alleged "substantially higher income" during the same year.

Manaloto allegedly declared income of P17.50 million in his 2011 financial statements as deferred income in order to evade payment of correct taxes. His undeclared income in the same financial statements is pegged by the BIR at least P20 million which he allegedly used in purchasing 8 properties in Davao City from Andal, Jr.

The BIR said his unreported income in 2011 amounted to P39.97 million based on the Expenditures Method of Investigation. This means he allegedly underdeclared his income by 2,439%.

"For him to purchase P20 million worth of property, he should have earned P30 million -- you pay P10 million taxes, leaves you with P20 million so you can buy the property," Henares said.

The case against the two is the 136th filed under the BIR's Run After Tax Evaders (RATE) program under the Aquino administration.