Michael Yang's visa can be revoked over alleged non-payment of income taxes — Gordon

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Michael Yang’s visa can be revoked over alleged non-payment of income taxes — Gordon
© Screen grab/Senate PRIB Senator Richard Gordon at blue ribbon committee hearing, August 31, 2021. Screen grab/Senate PRIB

Senator Richard Gordon on Tuesday said former presidential economic adviser Michael Yang’s permanent residency visa could be revoked due to his alleged non-payment of his income tax returns (ITR).

“He is just a permanent resident and he can be removed kasi hindi siya nagbabayad ng (because he is not paying his) tax at wala tayong reciprocity with China. Puwede bang magkaroon ng permanent residency ang Filipino sa (and there was no reciprocity. Could a Filipino secure permanent residency in) China? No,” Gordon said in an interview with ANC.

He claimed that Yang has secured his visa after the latter paid $50,000 for its issuance.

“Dito sikat siya pagka nakausap niya at may cash-unduan, ang tingin ko d’yan, [kaya] nabigyan siya ng permanent residency visa. Ngayon, nangungulimbat siya sa ating bayan,” he said.

(He is popular here and he had this “cash-unduan,” as how I see it, that’s why he secured a permanent residency visa. Now, he is earning money from the Filipino people.)

Reached for his comment, Yang’s legal counsel, Atty. Raymond Fortun, said: “It is unfortunate that the good senator is targeting Mr. Yang as a way to get back at President [Rodrigo] Duterte. We have faith that due process will be observed by both the BIR and the Bureau of Immigration in evaluating the good senator’s contention.”

In a previous Senate blue ribbon committee hearing, it was disclosed that the Davao-based Chinese businessman only paid P7,600 in income tax in 2018 and failed to pay his duties from 2014 to 2017.

This, despite having several business engagements in the Philippines.

Gordon said Yang, who has served as President Rodrigo Duterte’s economic adviser, could not be considered as untouchable.

“I don’t think anybody is untouchable. We proved that with Dargani,” Gordon said, referring to the Mohit and Twinkle Dargani who were arrested by the officers from the Senate Office of Sergeant-At-Arms when they were about to fly to Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.

Mohit is Pharmally’s corporate secretary and treasurer while Twinkle is the firm’s president.

“Pakita ka, pumunta ka d’on huhulihin ka namin. Hulihin dapat ‘yan sapagkat kailangan magpaliwanag siya diretsa. ‘Di siya makapagsalita. Bakit? Natatakot s’ya huli palagi e,” he said.

(Appear before us. Appear before the Senate and we will arrest you because he needs to explain to us directly. He cannot disclose more information. Why? Because he could be caught.)

In September, the Senate blue ribbon committee chaired by Gordon moved to arrest Yang for being evasive.

In November, Yang sought relief from the Supreme Court and urged it to null and void the arrest orders and the lookout bulletin issued by the Bureau of Immigration against him.

Yang also asked the high court to stop the Senate committee from further requesting him to submit documents and information on his properties, such as cars, real estate, and corporations, as well as all tax records and donations.

The Senate panel is conducting an investigation into the transfer of P42 billion COVID-19 funds from the Department of Health to the Procurement Service of the Department of Budget and Management (PS-DBM).

This includes PS-DBM’s purchase of P8.6 billion worth of face masks, face shields, and PPEs from Pharmally Pharmaceutical Corporation, a firm that is being linked to Michael Yang.

Pharmally only had a P625,000 paid-up capital when it entered transactions with the government. — RSJ, GMA News

This article Michael Yang’s visa can be revoked over alleged non-payment of income taxes — Gordon was originally published in GMA News Online.

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