Court stops Corona tax fraud cases
THE Court of Tax Appeals on Wednesday issued a 60-day temporary restraining order blocking again the Wednesday arraignment of former Chief Justice Renato Corona on six charges of tax fraud.
In an en banc resolution, the tax court barred the Second Division from proceed with the cases until the en banc resolves Corona’s petition for review.
Associate Justice Caesar Casanova said the tax court en banc granted Corona’s plea for issuance of a preliminary prohibitory injunction with urgent prayer for the issuance of a TRO to stop the proceedings until the en banc resolves his petition for review.
In a five-page decision penned on Oct. 6, the court ruled that it was necessary to hold the proceedings for 60 days in order not to render the issues raised by Corona in his petition for review moot and academic.
“There is an urgent need to temporarily suspend the proceedings and observe the status quo until the parties’ respective positions on the matter are heard in an oral argument,” the en banc resolution read.
In his petition for review filed in July, the camp of Corona maintained that the accusations elaborated in his case of six counts of violation of Section 254 were already included in his case of six counts of violation of Section 255.
The ex-chief justice filed the petition for review after the Second Division’s denial of his motion for reconsideration that sought the dismissal of his case of violation of Section 254.
Corona is charged with violation of Section 254 of the National Internal Revenue Code for his failure to pay his income tax in 2003, 2004, 2005, 2007, 2008 and 2010.
He is also facing charges of violation of Section 255 of NIRC before the Second Division for failure to file or to supply correct information in his income tax returns also for the same years.
As far as his case of violation of Section 255 is concerned, Corona refused to enter any plea, prodding the Second Division to enter a not-guilty plea for him.
Corona’s petition for review is set on Oct. 20. On the other hand, the Second Division has set Corona’s arraignment on Dec. 9. Corona’s non-settlement of income tax case was deferred 12 times by the Second Division.