Pacquiao couple no longer required to pay ₱3.29-B cash bond over pending tax case

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FILE. Manny and Jinkee Pacquiao will no longer have to pay a cash bond worth more nearly ₱3.3 billion over their pending tax case, according to the Court of Appeals.

Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, August 2) — Boxing champion Senator Manny Pacquiao and his wife Jinkee will no longer have to pay a cash bond worth nearly ₱3.3 billion over their pending tax case.

The Court of Appeals (CTA) First Division released a resolution ordering the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) to "ceast and desist" from collecting a cash bond of ₱3.29 billion--or a surety bond of ₱4.9 billion--from the couple.

The BIR's tax assessment was originally a little over ₱2 billion, but the amount went up to over ₱3 billion due to surcharges and penalties.

In the ruling, the CTA said it is waiving the cash deposit or bond for "lack of merit" and ordered the BIR to lift the warrants of distraint and/or levy and garnishment.

It argued that the BIR violated rules and committed irregularities in its investigation and collection of Pacquiao's supposed tax liability.

The court noted the BIR's failure to issue certain notices as part of due process and failure to establish a case of tax evasion during preliminary investigation.

"Petitioners' motion to lift notices of tax lien annotated on properties registered in the name of petitioners filed on May 30, 2016, the same is granted. The notice of tax Lien dated January 8, 2015…served at the Register of Deeds, General Santos is cancelled and withdrawn," the CTA said.

The couple, through a petition filed at the tax court in 2012, questioned the BIR's assessment and order for them to pay the amount in supposed unpaid taxes.

But in 2013, the BIR instead issued a tax lien and a warrant of distraint and levy and garnishment against Pacquiao's properties to cover the alleged liability.

The CTA required Pacquiao to pay the cash or surety bond to stop the implementation of the BIR order against their assets.

Pacquiao brought the matter to the Supreme Court, which eventually ruled in his favor and ordered the tax court to recompute the bond or determine if it can be waived.

CNN Philippines' Robert Vergara contributed to this report.