MANILA -- The Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) filed separate tax evasion complaints before the Department of Justice (DOJ) against two personalities who are facing charges in connection with the PHP6.4-billion shabu shipment from China that was seized last May.
BIR Commissioner Cesar Dulay said alleged customs fixer Mark Ruben Taguba and businessman Yi Shen Dong, aka Kenneth Dong, willfully attempted to evade the payment of taxes by not filing their respective annual income tax returns and quarterly value-added tax returns.
He said Taguba and Dong evaded the payment of PHP850, 574, 228.77 and PHP11, 406,940.60 in taxes to the government, respectively.
Dulay said Taguba failed to register with the BIR his business of facilitating the import of goods at the Bureau of Customs (BOC) prior to his trucking and other business ventures.
Based on the congressional inquiries and data obtained from the BOC, a total of 7,458 and 7,694 container vans were brought in by Mr. Taguba's consignees for 2016 and 2017, respectively, he told reporters during a press conference at the DOJ Thursday.
In 2016, Taguba earned PHP1.2 billion, or PHP170,000 per container van, from being a player or fixer, Dulay said, citing congressional inquiries and data obtained from the BOC.
Taguba admitted under oath before congressional inquiries that his clients would pay him an all-in sum ranging from PHP170,000 to PHP190,000 per container van, Dulay said.
That year, he bought a Chevrolet Trailblazer worth PHP1.5 million and a Yamaha Mio worth PHP69,900, the commissioner added.
However, the BIR found that Taguba failed to file any income tax return or value-added tax return from 2009 to 2016, and thus, failed to declare any income during the period, Dulay said.
Dong, on the other hand, failed to file any income tax return, VAT and percentage tax returns from 2003 to 2017 based on their records.
In addition, Dong paid PHP850,000 in 2013 for a 2010 Toyota Fortuner, PHP4.5 million in 2016 for a 2010 BMW, and PHP2.4 million in 2016 for a 2013 Ford Expedition, Dulay said, citing documents culled by Land Transportation Office (LTO) investigators.
The businessman, together with his wife, also acquired a townhouse unit in Paranaque City worth PHP3.55 million in 2013 as shown in documents obtained from the city's Registry of Deeds, said Dulay.
Despite these, Dong failed to file any income tax return, value-added tax return, or percentage tax returns from 2003 to 2017 based on BIR records, the commissioner said.
Kenneth Dong admitted that Mark Taguba was charging him PHP170, 000 per container van. He also testified before the Senate that he does not pay any tax -- income tax, VAT or percentage tax -- on the income he earned from his venture with Taguba and that he contributed millions of pesos to candidates during the election, Dulay said.
The cases filed against two delinquent taxpayers are the 114 and 115 filed under the Run After Tax Evaders (RATE) program under Dulay's leadership.
It will be recalled that Taguba and Dong appeared as resource persons during the Senate inquiries into the shabu shipment from China that slipped past the BOC last May.
Taguba and Dong were among the personalities charged by the DOJ before the Valenzuela City regional trial court for violating Section 4 (importation of dangerous drugs) of Republic Act 9165 or the Comprehensive Dangerous Drugs Act.
Source: Philippine News Agency