Manny Pacquiao's promoter hits back over claims of unpaid taxes
Bob Arum says allegations of 2.2 billion pesos being owed are false and certified US paperwork is being sent to the Philippines
Agence France-Presse in Las Vegas
Manny Pacquiao’s promoter says he expects certified US tax paperwork for the Philippine boxing hero to be received by authorities in his homeland “very soon” after they froze the fighter’s assets.
Bob Arum said that allegations of 2.2 billion pesos (HK$390 million) in unpaid taxes from US bouts in 2008 and 2009 are false and that his Top Rank agency made certain the proper money was paid to US authorities just to avoid such problems.
“Filipino authorities confirmed that Manny is not required to pay double tax,” Arum said. “If Manny paid US taxes for fights and endorsements that occurred on US soil, he is not required to pay double taxes in the Philippines.”
Pacquiao, 34, said Philippine tax bureau officials had rejected the documentation he provided to show payments had already been made to the US Internal Revenue Service, a claim Arum supported.
“For each of Manny’s fights that occurred in the United States, including those in 2008 and 2009, Top Rank withheld 30 per cent of Manny’s purses and paid those monies directly to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) via electronic funds transfer (EFT).
“Top Rank has deposit confirmations for each payment. Top Rank has done the same for all US endorsements it has facilitated on Manny’s behalf.”
But, Arum said, Philippine officials wanted certified paperwork of those transactions from the IRS rather than deposit confirmations.
“Top Rank submitted copies of the EFT deposit acknowledgements to the Bureau of Internal Revenue [BIR] as proof of payment. The BIR received the documents but directed Manny to obtain ‘certified’ documents directly from the IRS itself.
“Obtaining certified copies of documents from the IRS takes time. Manny made the formal request to the IRS and we have every expectation that the necessary documents will be furnished to the BIR very soon.”
In the meantime, Pacquiao’s Philippine bank accounts remain frozen and he remains unable to make good on a pledge he made after taking a unanimous decision on Saturday in Macau over American Brandon Rios to help support victims of Super Typhoon Haiyan, which claimed thousands of lives in the Philippines earlier in November.
“I am not a criminal or a thief. I am not hiding anything,” Pacquiao said. “I have already paid my taxes in America. Had I not paid the correct taxes, they [US authorities] would have come after me, and I would not have been able to travel there.”