By Jun Ramirez
Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) Commissioner Caesar Dulay has filed a string of libel cases, seeking P20 million in damages, against newspaper columnist and social media blogger Ramon Tulfo for calling him a “corrupt official”.
Included in the three counts of libel and seven counts of cyber libel filed at the Quezon City Prosecutor’s Office were Dante Ang II, Manila Times president and chief operating officer’ and editors Rene Bas, Blanca Mercado, Nerylin Tenorio, Leena Chua, Arnold Belleza, and Lynette Luna.
In a press statement, the BIR chief stated that Tulfo’s articles printed in the Manila Times, and carried in his social media accounts have maliciously portrayed him as having had amassed billions of pesos in under-the-table deals with big business enterprises.
He said Revenue Assistant Commissioner Teresita Angeles has already denied that she was the one caught in a secret tape conversation, denouncing the alleged anomalous deals of the BIR with Mighty Cigarettes and Del Monte Food Corporation that went viral on social media, and which formed the basis for Tulfo’s columns.
Dulay said the malicious write-ups caused him “enormous physical suffering, mental anguish, serious anxiety, besmirched reputation, wounded feelings, and social humiliation.”
Dulay also asked the Bureau of Immigration (BI) to place Tulfo, who is also Malacanang’s special envoy to China, in its hold departure list to prevent him from fleeing the country just to avoid prosecution.