Ressa moves for dismissal of tax evasion charges
Rappler Holdings Corporation (RHC) president Maria Ressa has sought leave before the Court of Tax Appeals (CTA) to file a demurrer of evidence seeking the dismissal of the P70 million tax case against her due to the prosecution’s weak evidence presented during the trial.
Ressa charged with three counts of failure to file return, supply correct information and pay and remit taxes, and one count of tax evasion..
“Based solely on the Prosecution’s failure to establish an obligation to pay tax, the criminal cases against RHC and Maria Ressa should be dismissed,” read her motion.
The case stemmed from a complaint filed by the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) which alleged that RHC’s 2015 tax returns showed P162.5 million earnings from the issuance of its Philippine Depositary Receipts (PDRs) to NBM Rappler L.P. and Omidyar Network Find LLC.
A PDR is a security which grants the holder the right to the delivery or sale of the underlying shares of stocks.
“There is no evidence that RHC and Maria Ressa performed a course of action that would be considered unlawful,” argued her motion.
“In the first place, there is nothing illegal per se for a holding company to issue PDRs,” it added.