Lawyer blames Koncz for Pacquiao's tax mess

Posted at 01/07/14 4:42 PM

MANILA, Philippines – If there’s anyone to blame over Manny Pacquiao’s recent tax woes, it should be Michael Koncz, the boxer’s long time legal counsel said.

Atty. Franklin “Jeng” Gacal, who works as chief of staff for the fighting congressman, noted that the Canadian adviser is in charge of overseeing Pacquiao’s tax obligations as he represents the boxer in his US transactions.

Gacal was referring to Pacquiao’s recent brush with the US Internal Revenue Service (IRS), which issued a tax lien on the boxer’s properties.

“Well, it appears there is really a problem. The IRS is claiming there is a tax deficiency. If there were some mistakes, it was Mike’s fault. Why did it happen?” Gacal, who is currently recuperating from stroke, said in Boxing Scene.

The IRS had filed a lien on the fighting congressman’s properties and bank accounts to cover an alleged $18-million tax deficiency between 2006 and 2010.

The lien was later lifted after Pacquiao’s lawyers and accountants in the US addressed the issue.

But Gacal stressed that there wouldn’t have been any problems in the first place if Koncz hired good accountants.

“They were supposed to have hired accountants. At the end of the year, after the filing of the tax returns, all problems should have been solved. If the US still has claims, there should be problems with recording and everything,” said Gacal. “So this is the point man’s fault and that is Mike.”

Pacquiao is also facing legal battles regarding his taxes in the Philippines.

The boxer has yet to resolve the alleged P2.2-billion obligations with the Bureau of Internal Revenue. His case is currently being heard a the Court of Tax Appeals.

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