Martial Law

Prosecution claims victory on Day 6

They claim Corona failed to show in his SALNs he could afford the condominium units he and his wife bought

THE PROSECUTION. Tañada, Quimbo face the media. Photo by Emil Sarmiento

MANILA, Philippines – Before the defense panel could even cross examine Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) Commissioner Kim Henares, the prosecution is already claiming victory in establishing that Chief Justice Renato Corona and his wife cannot possibly afford the expensive condominiums he declared in his Statements of Assets, Liabilities, and Net Worth (SALNs).

“Chief Justice Renato Corona’s total salary as member of the Supreme Court since 2002 cannot support his real estate-buying habit during the said period. The most that he earned in 10 years as magistrate was P5-million and it is a fraction of what he spent for the condominium units that he and his wife bought,” prosecution spokesperson Romero “Miro” Quimbo said.

The Senate impeachment court junked the motion of the defense to block Henares from presenting the tax records of the Corona spouses.

Henares divulged Corona’s net income as follows:

  • P370,756.69 (2006)
  • P355,890.40 (2007)
  • P450,330.71 (2008)
  • P465,972.40 (2009)
  • P481,178.25 (2010)

 

“The Bureau of Internal Revenue chief told the impeachment tribunal that Corona declared no other source of income other than his salary from 2006 to 2010 as associate justice and later as chief justice of the Supreme Court,” a prosecution statement said.

Bank records

For Mrs Corona, Henares also testified that she only acquired a tax identification number (TIN) in 2003 when she applied for a one-time TIN for the purchase of a property in La Vista Subdivision that is worth P11-million.

To the prosecution, this means Mrs Corona did not report any legal income before 2003 that would have enabled them to buy the condominiums.

Also on Wednesday, the prosecution panel requested the impeachment court to subpoena bank records of the Corona couple. (See Prosecution: Corona bank records next)

The bank records will complete the picture, said prosecution spokesperson Lorenzo Tañada.

“The ITR (Income Tax Return), SALN and bank deposits are the jigsaw pieces which if put together will solve the puzzle. These are the ingredients that will provide the big picture. Taken together, they provide sequence by which income are turned into assets,” Tañada said.

“If one would invoke the defense that his other income comes from interests from bank deposits and thus need not be reported in the ITR as they are treated as final tax, then the existence of these can be cross-checked in the SALN. That’s the beauty of presenting the three documents as one contiguous terrain of evidence because they validate each other.” – Rappler.com

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