MANILA, Philippines – Sarangani Rep. Manny Pacquiao felt harassed after the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) filed a case against him for failing to submit certain documents to the agency.
"Sa tingin ko ay may harassment na nangyayari. Hindi ko naman tatalikuran ang taxes ko," Pacquiao said in an interview with Korina Sanchez on DZMM.
"Obligasyon ko 'yun, na magbayad ng taxes. Bakit naman mandadaya sa gobyerno at tatalikuran ko 'yan?," he added.
But Pacquiao maintained that he held no grudge against BIR Commissioner Kim Henares.
"Wala naman akong kinasama ng loob. Wala naman akong kaaway," Pacquiao said. "I'll pray for them, God bless them."
The BIR filed charges against Pacquiao for violating Article 266 of the National Revenue Code, after the boxer repeatedly snubbed the agency’s summons to present his tax records.
The BIR wants to investigate 33 tax records, including Pacquiao's annual income tax return in 2010, his book of accounts, list of assets, as well as his earnings from his fights against Antonio Margarito and Joshua Clottey.
Pacquiao explained that he already tried to submit the documents to the agency.
"Bago pa nila ginawa 'yung pagsasampa ng kaso against sa akin, one week yata before, pumunta 'yung tao ko galing sa Manila, pumunta sa regional office," he said.
"Nagdala s'ya ng mga papeles, pero hindi nila tinanggap 'yung mga papeles," Pacquiao added.
The boxer added that he had trouble filing his tax returns in 2010.
"Yung 2010 na tax ko, pagkakaalam ko 'yun, natagalan lang dun sa America, kaya nahirapan din na mag-file sa Pilipinas. Kailangan din 'yung tax return ko sa America para magamit dito sa Pilipinas," he explained.
Pacquiao also agreed with the sentiment of Senator Ralph Recto, who said the boxer's fight earnings should no longer be taxed in the Philippines as he already paid taxes with the US Internal Revenue Service.
"Pag income ko na tax na sa US, hindi na pwedeng i-tax dito," he told ABS-CBNnews.com. "'Yun lang kinikita ko sa Pilipinas, 'yun lang ang pwede nilang i-tax."
"Sabi ko, pag i-tax ako sa America at ita-tax din ako dito, double taxation na 'yun. May batas tayo tungkol sa double taxation," Pacquiao added.
Pacquiao said that his lawyer has already taken care of the situation.
"Wala na 'yung gulo. Naasikaso na 'yun ng abogado ko, naayos na," he said, adding, "Hindi ko naman tatalikuran ang taxes ko. Law-abiding citizen naman ako."