Pacquaio-Mayweather showdown looms

Manny Pacquaio could get a shot at WBC welterwight title but faces tough fight from tax authorities over $50m.

    Pacquaio-Mayweather showdown looms
    Manny Pacquiao has leapfrogged Luis Abregu and Amir Khan in the WBC rankings [Getty Images]

    Manny Pacquiao versus Floyd Mayweather Jr may be edging close to becoming a reality after the World Boxing Council made Pacquiao the number one contender for Mayweather's WBC welterweight title.

    This follows Pacquiao's demolition of Brendan Rios in Macau and if Mayweather refuses to fight should the WBC push for it, he runs the risk of being stripped of his title.

    Pacquiao was not in the rankings released last month but has now leapfrogged Luis Abregu of Argentina and Britain's Amir Khan.

    This came from all of the punches, beatings, blood and sweat that I endured in the ring.

    Manny Pacquiao, boxer talks about his tax issues

    Meanwhile, Pacquiao said he has no money to keep his promise to help typhoon victims because Philippine revenue authorities have frozen his bank accounts.

    The Bureau of Internal Revenue said that Pacquiao has not proved he paid taxes in 2008-2009.

    It has assessed that Pacquiao, once one of the world's highest paid athletes, owed 2.2bn pesos ($50m) in back taxes as of July.

    Pacquiao, the wealthiest member of the Philippine Congress, said he borrowed over $22,700 to purchase relief supplies before his fight on Sunday with Rios in Macau and will borrow more to keep his word to
    typhoon victims.

    Pacquiao said he paid taxes in the US following his victories against Ricky Hatton and Oscar de la Hoya and that a treaty prevents double taxation.

    "I appeal to them to remove the garnishment so that I can move and pay for my staff's salaries," Pacquiao said. "I am not a criminal or a thief.

    "The money that was garnished by (the Bureau of Internal Revenue) is not stolen.

    "This came from all of the punches, beatings, blood and sweat that I endured in the ring."

    A criminal case was dropped by prosecutors for alleged unpaid taxes in 2010, but the revenue authorities' tax claims for the 2008-2009 are still pending.

    Revenue Commissioner Kim Henares, however, said that the only proof Pacquiao has given of his tax payments was a letter from promoter Top Rank and HBO of the taxes he has paid to the Us, but nothing from the US Internal Revenue Service.

    "That is self-serving and a mere scrap of paper," Henares said. "What he can do is go to the IRS, ask IRS to certify this copy (of his tax payments) as a true copy. We have been waiting for that for two years."

    SOURCE: Al Jazeera and agencies


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