BIR zeroes in on gold miner: Does he pay taxes?



Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) commissioner Kim Jacinto-Henares. INQUIRER FILE PHOTO

The gold miner whom the group of Victor “Vic” Siman visited in Jose Panganiban, Camarines Norte, hours before a police-military team  killed all 13 of them in Atimonan, Quezon province, 12 days ago  has become a person of interest for the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR).

Internal Revenue Commissioner Kim Henares said Thursday that the BIR would investigate Ronnie Habitan whether he was properly paying his taxes.

Habitan’s name cropped up after the daughter of Supt. Alfredo Perez Consemino, one those killed, disclosed that her father’s group, led by Siman, met Habitan earlier on Jan. 6.

Just the other day, Habitan was identified by Supt. Hansel Marantan, the ground commander of the police operation at Atimonan, as the one who had tipped him off of Siman’s group traveling to Quezon that day.

At a news conference at the Department of Justice, Henares said the BIR “will eventually look into” the income taxes of those involved in the incident “once it’s a bit settled down” as her office did “not want to contribute to confusion” now.

“But one thing that I really want to look into is the mining operation in Camarines Norte because there’s this  small-scale mining law. There’s an excise tax of 2 percent and the small scale mining law requires all small-scale miners to sell only to the BSP (Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas),” the BIR chief said.

Henares then zeroed in on her interest in Habitan who she said had admitted to being into small-scale mining and to be selling  gold.

“Does he pay taxes? she said was one of the things the BIR will look into Habitan’s case.

High-grade miner

Habitan is known in Camarines Norte as a “high-grade” miner who hit pay dirt in small-scale mining, Chief Insp. Sam Belmonte, acting police chief of Jose Panganiban, was quoted as saying in an Inquirer report on Jan. 11.

The two-story house of Habitan in the town has a black BMW in the garage.

The Philippine Daily Inquirer report quoted a source as saying that Siman allegedly invested in gold mining in Camarines Norte after he started running the illegal numbers racket “jueteng” in the province.

The informant alleged that Siman also owned a gold mining operation in Paracale, Camarines Norte. “That’s why he brought along Supt. Alfredo Consemino on that fateful trip because the police official was his security consultant in his mining operation,” the source had said.

Gold black market

As much as 95 percent of gold trade in the country is now made through the black market, according to the BSP.

The amount corresponded to the drop in the volume of gold sold by traders and small-scale miners to the BSP after the government began collecting in 2011 a 7-percent tax on gold sales—a 2-percent excise tax and a 5-percent creditable withholding tax.

The BSP is required to buy all the gold from local producers. But gold traders have shied away from the BSP, selling the metal instead to smugglers, since the BIR imposed the tax at the point of sale.

Vic Villamar, a driver of Habitan, earlier told the Inquirer that Siman’s group was in his boss’ house in Barangay Plaridel in Jose Panganiban town on Jan. 6.

Villamar said Siman’s group arrived at about 6 a.m. and talked with his boss in a room. The driver said the group stayed until about 11 a.m. then left after having lunch with Habitan.

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  • dave

    I haven’t heard that BIR sued somebody from Multi Level Marketing. If they can just attend MLM sessions they would hear Premium members raking thousands or pesos every week. And sometmes millions and showing luxury cars and condos. I don’t think they are paying a centavo of tax from what they got. BIR is very lax on them. I wonder why???

  • regie

    sir for your info meron ng naconvict ng tax evasion na MLM.yung kintanar couple…itong habitan na ito ay  di kaya incriminatory machination ang pagtitip na ginawa that resulted to multiple murder. then magiging art.4 par .1 ng revised penal code. ” any person who performs a felony but the wrong act done be different from that which he intended” kasi papasok na yung ” he who is the cause of the cause, is the cause of the evil cause”?


      mali ang argument mo dave. nagperform ba sya ng felony sa the mear tipping the police? is the act of tipping to the police a felonious act?

  • Rovingmoron

    Madam Henares, the BIR, under your leadership must run after these tax evaders, especially these small-scale miners in Camarines Norte and other parts of the country. My question is how come Ronnie Habitan called up Marantan that the Vic Siman’s group would be paying him a visit to transact business? Is Habitan getting protection from Marantan’s group? Aside from small-scale miners, Henares can also run after the scrap buyers and dealers in the Calabarzon Area, especially Laguna, who are raking so much profits without paying correct taxes to the government.

  • Edward Solilap

    The BIR always shows’ up once ther’es a mention of huge money but how about other government agencies if they were doing their job as well. Local Government and Police Officials were blind what’s happening around their localities especially with the hot stuff like gold. The DENR and the environmentalist etc it seems’ nobody care anymore about the bad effect of mining industry.

    • Jack

      kung hindi sila kasapi sa KKK clan, siguradong iimbestigahan sila ng bir

  • Carmencita Lopez

     bakit ang mga MLM gaya ng USANA hindi iniimbestiga?

  • pablosantino

    how about xtrm 1-11..USANA?

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