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BIR files criminal complaints vs ‘ghost’ companies behind fake receipts scam

By Eileen Mencias

Bureau of Internal Revenue Commissioner Romeo D. Lumagui, Jr. led the filing of criminal complaints before the Department of Justice against four “ghost” corporations that cheated government of ₱25.5 billion in taxes from the use of fake receipts and invoices.

According to Lumagui, these companies make money by selling fake receipts to clients who then evade tax payments.

“We are just getting started. The financial magnitude of this syndicate issuing fictitious receipts is alarming. The taxpayers and businesses who used these fictitious receipts will be audited by our examiners,” Lumagui said.

He said the BIR now has a list of the buyers and sellers of the fictitious receipts that it got from the raid involving Brenterprise International Inc. in a condominium unit in Quezon City last December.

Thousands of fictitious receipts were seized, and subsequent investigation showed that these ghost companies do not have any legitimate business activity. These companies were only established for the sole purpose of selling fictitious sales invoices and/or receipts to their buyers for the latter’s claim of false and anomalous purchases to lessen tax payments.

As a result of these companies’ fraudulent tax schemes, the government lost an estimated total deficiency income tax amounting to ₱17.63 billion and total deficiency value-added tax amounting to ₱7.91 billion, for taxable years 2019-2021, inclusive of surcharges and interests.

Lumagui emphasized the importance of intensifying enforcement activities to put an end to these fraudulent activities and increase voluntary tax compliance.

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