Philippine Bureau of Internal Revenue commissioner Kim Henares during a radio interview with radio station DZMM this morning said that the kickbacks state witness Ruby Tuason received when she was the courier for alleged pork barrel mastermind Janet Lim-Napoles are all taxable under Philippine taxation law.
Henares said that it does not really matter where the income came from, it is the fact the the money was received and that the recipient benefited from the proceeds.
“We are here to uphold our law. The law says that Tuason’s kickbacks are taxable, so we are going to pursue her bank accounts to see if we can recover what we can,” Henares said.
Henares said that since Tuason has admitted to the kickbacks, her agency is now obligated to investigate and determine how much is owed to the government.
Henares also said that Tuason “declared that she received around 40 million pesos, then it is our responsibility to make sure we get 30% of that, which is 12 million,” and adds that “it is in the best interest of the Filipino people that we see to it that this is recovered.”
Atty. Dennis Manalo, legal counsel for Tuason said that it is the most absurd thing he has ever heard in his career as an attorney. He said that the money is the property of the people to begin with, and taking 30% of it basically is the same thing if Tuason returns the money.
“There seems to be an eager, over implementation of the law here. My client has said that she will return the money, I think they (BIR) are just wasting their time,” Manalo said.
Henares was told about Manalo’s reaction during lunch in Makati this afternoon, she simply said that “the law is the law, and we have to do our job.”
A few seconds later, a grinning Henares comes back and says, “let’s see” and walks away.