More charges will be filed against suspected tax evaders and smugglers in the coming days, President Benigno "Noynoy" Aquino III said Friday.
Aquino made the statement in the wake of the filing of charges against William Villarica, owner of five Villarica Pawnshop branches, after a Bureau of Internal Revenue investigation showed Villarica failed to file income tax returns for seven years and paid only P25,607.25 in taxes from 1998 to 2009.
Aquino said his administration may even file more than it initially promised, which was one case a week.
"Why will we limit it to one? Pwedeng more," President Aquino told reporters in Subic after he inaugurated new buildings for the Philippine National Police's school of values and leadership.
Aquino said his administration will ensure that government cases against tax evaders and smugglers are backed up by solid evidence to ensure that the conviction rate would be as desired.
"Thorough ang case preparation para mabilis proseso ng paggawad ng katarungan para ipakita natin gaano kaseryoso ang gobyerno sa paghahabol sa mga taong mali ang ginawa (The case preparation will be solid to speed up the delivery of justice, to show that the government is serious in running after wrongdoers)," Aquino said.
As part of its intensified campaign against tax evaders and smugglers, the Department of Finance — which oversees the BIR and the Bureau of Customs — is tapping social networking sites Twitter and Facebook to get reports and leads from ordinary citizens about possible law violators.
Aquino promised during the campaign that instead of raising taxes to increase government revenue, he will ensure efficient tax collection and go after tax evaders and smugglers. — Jam Sisante/RSJ/LBG, GMANews.TV