According to the South China Morning Post, Philippine boxing superstar Many Pacquiao might be in some deep trouble with the law. Recent reports have indicated that all of the former champ’s domestic bank accounts have been frozen by the Philippine authorities. Not surprisingly, Pacquiao wasn’t happy about it.
“This is harassment,” the former champ said to ABS-CBN television during an interview.
It looks like Pacquiao won’t be able to celebrate his recent victory over Brandon Rios, which occurred just two days before the tax evasion scandal was announced. The victory over Rios was a big win for the boxing legend, considering he had recently dropped two consecutive fights against Timothy Bradley and Juan Manuel Marquez, causing many to question whether the thirty-four year old should hang up his gloves for good. Now, Pacquiao has more serious problems to worry about other than his boxing career.
This latest scandal could be a major setback in his political career; the standout professional boxer is also a second-term congressman with “ambitions of eventually becoming president,” according to the SCMP.
Pacquiao’s side of the story suggests that he broke no laws and the authority’s allegations are completely baseless. He claims the authorities froze his bank accounts because they think he evaded paying taxes on his high paying fights in the U.S. during the peak of his career in 2008 and 2009.
Pacquiao maintains he played by the rules because he already paid taxes in the U.S., which is allowed under a treaty that the two countries signed with one another. The treaty permits citizens from both countries to only have to pay taxes once in order to avoid double taxation.
“I am not a criminal or a thief. I am not hiding anything. I will face my problems as they come,” Pacquiao declared.