By: Ben R. Rosario
The Commission on Audit has denied with finality tax bounty hunter Danilo Lihaylihay’s bid to get hold of a P3.032-billion reward from the government.
In a decision issued recently, the CoA-Commission Proper rejected for the second time Lihaylihay’s claim to the supposed reward that comprised his alleged 25 percent share in the P3.6-billion settlement deal between the Bureau of Internal Revenue and the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas in 2008.
Lihaylihay has also claimed a share as informant’s reward of the P6.64-billion tax deficiency assessment paid by the BSP based on a sworn information he filed with the BIR on April 24, 2006.
Reiterating its 2016 ruling on the issue, the CoA-CP stressed that it “has no jurisdiction over money claims for payments of Informer’s Reward.”
“The determination of liability of the government for Informer’s Reward, in this case, to Mr. Lihaylihay, is not lodged upon this Commission,” stated the CoA panel headed by Chairman Michael Aguinaldo. The two other members are Commissioners Jose A. Fabia and Isabel D. Agito.
Lihaylihay has filed a motion for reconsideration of CoA-CP Decision No. 2016-191 dated August 8, 2016 that dismissed his Petition for Money Claim against the BIR.
The petitioner maintained that the BIR should have paid him the Informer’s Reward plus six percent interest in the total amount of P3,032,367,324.47.
In appealing the CoA-CP decision, Lihaylihay cited a Supreme Court ruling in the Case of Rubic vs Auditor General in which it was pointed out that the Informer’s Reward is deposited in the National Treasury as trust fund to meet the claim and that CoA is “mandated to settle all accounts pertaining to expenditure and uses of funds held in trust by” government agencies.