BIR expects to collect over P39-B from tax cases

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The BIR has been aggressive in its name-and-shame campaign against tax evaders to raise more revenues for the Aquino administration

MANILA, Philippines – The government’s aggressive campaign against tax evaders is starting to bear fruit.

Some P39.73 billion is expected to be collected from 111 tax evasion cases filed by the country’s main revenue agency, the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR), before the Department of Justice.

Of the cases, 26 have been resolved, 24 filed in various courts, and 52 submitted for resolution.

Those submitted for resolution include cases against controversial former public officials — former Armed Forces of the Philippines comptroller Carlos Garcia and dismissed Local Water Utilities Administration (LWUA) chief Propero Pichay Jr, who is also former Surigao del Sur representative.

The BIR alleged that Garcia and his wife, Clarita, evaded payment of P235.8 million taxes in 2004. Garcia was accused of plundering at least P300 million in public funds while in service. His brother-in-law, Edgardo Yambao, was also slapped with a P285.7-million tax evasion case for failing to file his income tax returns (ITR) in 1999, 2001 and 2005.

Pichay meanwhile is facing tax raps for failing to file his ITR in 2009 even as he acquired real and personal properties that year. Pichay was assessed with a total tax liability of P32.73 million.

The BIR launched a name-and-shame campaign against tax evaders under the Aquino administration as part of the President’s promise to plug the leakage in the tax system before raising or implementing new taxes. The Bureau of Customs, the second-largest revenue agency, has a similar campaign against smugglers.

The BIR, which accounts for 70% of total government revenues, is tasked to collect P1.066 trillion this year, the first time in its history that the goal reached the P1-trillion mark. –

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