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Rappler president Maria Ressa pays P204,000 bail bond at tax court

Rappler Holdings president Maria Ressa paid a bail bond in the amount of P204,000 at the Court of Tax Appeals (CTA) on Tuesday ahead of the issuance of an arrest warrant against her for four tax charges.

Ressa went to the CTA First Division, where all her cases were filed, to pay the cash bond.



“In view of the voluntary surrender of the accused Maria A. Ressa before the Court, the Cash bond in the amount of P60,000 posted for her provisional liberty is hereby accepted and approved,” the CTA said in a resolution penned by Presiding Justice Roman del Rosario.

The CTA issued three other resolutions, one for each tax charges against Ressa and Rappler.

The bail recommended for Ressa amounts to P60,000 for each count of violation of Section 255 of the National Internal Revenue Code (NIRC) for incorrect and inaccurate information on income tax return for 2015, and value-added tax returns for the third and fourth quarters of 2015.

Ressa also paid a cash bond worth P24,000 for one count of violation of Section 254 of the NIRC, also known as tax evasion.

The CTA set the arraignment of Ressa on January 23, 2019 at 8:30 a.m.

Ressa was separately charged before a Pasig court with violating Section 255 of the NIRC for allegedly failing to report the total quarterly sales receipts coming from the issuance and sale of Philippine Depositary Receipts (PDRs) in the second quarter of 2015.

The alleged deficiency in value-added tax reached P294,258.58, according to the official information filed before the local court.

Ressa voluntarily surrendered and paid the P60,000 bail bond at the Pasig Regional Trial Court Branch 265 on December 3. 

The Department of Justice earlier found probable cause to charge Rappler with tax evasion related to a complaint file by the Bureau of Internal Revenue earlier this year.

The BIR has accused Rappler of failing to pay taxes from the sale of PDRs in 2015, estimating the deficiency to be around P133.84 million. —KG, GMA News