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Economy

BIR files tax evasion raps against doctors, lawyers

September 15, 2011 5:26pm

The Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) on Thursday filed tax evasion charges against two doctors and two lawyers as part of the efforts to urge professionals and the self-employed to pay taxes.

At the Department of Justice, BIR Commissioner Kim Henares led the filing of cases against dermatologist Sylvia Huang and neurosurgeon Willy Go Lopez for supposedly not issuing receipts for their services.

The BIR also filed cases against lawyers George Erwin Garcia and Abelardo Aportadera Jr. for “failing to pay the right amount of income and value-added taxes (VAT) and not supplying the BIR with correct and accurate information."

GMA News Online is still trying to reach Huang, Lopez, Garcia, and Aportadera as of this posting.

The professionals may be meted out with fines of P1,000 to P50,000 or prison terms of two to four years, if found guilty,

The Aquino administration is intensifying its drive for the 1.7 million self-employed and professional taxpayers, such as lawyers, doctors, and businessmen to pay the right amount of taxes.

The government has identified the self-employed and professional sectors as sources of higher tax collections, said Finance Secretary Cesar Purisima. A labor group has criticized the plan saying government should run after tax evaders instead.

Underdeclared income

The two doctors were charged after a BIR team visited their respective clinics and seized their receipt booklets as well as their appointment books.

In the case of Lopez, the BIR said his book of receipts listed only 47 patients from January to August this year but data from his office showed he attended to 279 patients in the same period.

On the other hand, the bureau claimed that Lawyers Garcia and Aportadera underdeclared their income, BIR added.

The agency said Garcia computed his tax liability at P26.9 million and his value-added tax liability at P11 million in his 2010 income tax return. The BIR noted that Garcia bought a P53-million unit at a posh Makati City condominium last year.

Aportadera, who worked as a consultant of the Banco Filipino Savings and Mortgage Bank, allegedly underdeclared his income as well, the BIR said.

Citing documents from the Philippine Deposit Insurance Corporation, the BIR said Banco Filipino paid Aportadera some P66.7 million from 2008 to 2009. The lawyer, however, declared a gross income of P50 million for the two-year period, the agency said.

The BIR then computed his total tax liability at P26 million or P5.5 million in income tax liabilities, and P20.5 million in VAT liabilities. — PE/VS, GMA News




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