Jeanne Napoles answers raps–from London
The daughter of alleged pork barrel scam mastermind Janet Lim-Napoles on Friday finally answered the P32-million tax evasion complaint filed against her by the Bureau of Internal Revenue in the Department of Justice last year. She executed the affidavit in London before Philippine Consul General Senen Mangalile, a DOJ staffer said.
The eight-page counteraffidavit of Jeanne Catherine Lim Napoles was submitted by a lawyer to the DOJ preliminary investigation panel headed by Senior Assistant Prosecutor Edna Valenzuela.
Napoles, whose mother is being investigated over one of the Philippines’ biggest corruption scandals, earned widespread derision for her social media posts featuring flashy cars and a swanky apartment in the United States.
Prior to the pork barrel scandal, Napoles regularly took to Tumblr, Instagram and YouTube to document her high-flying lifestyle.
But after the Inquirer broke last July her mother’s alleged diversion of P10 billion from the Priority Development Assistance Fund (PDAF) in connivance with lawmakers, her posts drew anger across the country where many believe a few families are enriching themselves unfairly.
Napoles deactivated her social media accounts, but her photos and videos had already become viral.
Done in London
The prosecutor’s office declined to give reporters copies of Napoles’ counteraffidavit.
Napoles’ basic defense was that the properties being questioned by the BIR belonged to her parents even if they were acquired using her name, the staff member said.
The BIR claimed Napoles owed the government P32.06 million in tax liabilities.
The agency said she did not declare any income, although she acquired and registered under her name real properties in 2011 and 2012.
Among those properties were an apartment in the swanky Ritz Carlton residential block in Los Angeles, which was acquired in 2011 for P54.73 million, and a farm in Bayambang town, Pangasinan province, bought in 2012, in which she allegedly had a one-ninth share equivalent to P1.49 million.
Assistant State Prosecutor Stewart Allan Mariano, who temporarily took over from Valenzuela in the hearing last month, set Feb. 18 as the deadline for the BIR and Napoles’ parents to file their memorandums in the separate P61-million tax evasion complaint filed against the couple. With a report from AFP
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