WBO welterweight beltholder Manny Pacquiao is being investigated for housing a fugitive who is being investigated for alleged association with a stolen car racket, according to a report by Yahoo!Sports.
Pacquiao has reportedly been sighted with Mohammad “Bong” Akia, the former head of the Presidential Anti-Smuggling Group, on a flight from Manila to General Santos City, and has reportedly allowed Akia to reside in his home in the Philippines while under investigation for the selling of one of 26 cars retrieved by police.
This means more trouble for Pacquiao, who was already under scrutiny after the Philippines’ Bureau for Internal Revenue filed a criminal complaint against the fighter for failure to submit documents to investigators looking into his tax returns.
Ranked by Forbes magazine last year as the world’s 24th richest athlete, Pacquiao could face up to two years in jail if convicted as prosecutors decide whether or not there is enough evidence to bring the case to court.
The complaint was filed on March 1 after Pacquiao failed to submit the documents despite being notified on three separate occasions by a subpoena.
Pacquiao’s advisor, Michael Koncz, told RingTV.com that “for whatever reason, some document wasn’t produced, and I’m sure that it will be rectified very shortly” in relation to the boxer’s tax situation, adding, “we’ll resolve it.”
Pacquiao has an upcoming defense of his belt opposite WBO junior welterweight titleholder Tim Bradley that is slated for June 9 at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas.
Lem Satterfield can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org