How can celebrities escape when caught for tax evasion? Don`t be perplexed, pretend you didn`t know and blame the tax accountant.
Korean actress Song Hye-kyo was caught omitting approximately 2.5 billion won (2.46 U.S. million dollars) of taxes from 2009 through 2011 when she filed her income taxes.
Song reported she earned 13.7 billion won (13.46 million dollars) for three years. The actress reported 5.5 billion won (5.4 million dollars) without receipt out of 6.7 billion won (6.6 million dollars) reported as necessary expenses. Song`s agency made a press release on Tuesday stating she deeply regrets mishandling her tax affairs due to ignorance.
Politicians are more interested in National Tax Service`s "looking after" Song. The National Tax Service can charge taxes evaded for up to five years, but it ended Song`s case by telling her pay three years of unpaid and additional taxes. The Board of Audit and Inspection later made the tax agency charge an additional year of 2008, which signals that the tax agency did look after Song. Suspicions rose that former agency head Han Sang-ryul was looking after her. He is claimed to be beholden to Song`s tax accounting firm and repaid its kindness.
Tax accountant agencies help tax payment reduction or tax evasion. In 1999, singers Kim Kun-mo and Shin Seung-hoon were caught for evading tax, and a tax accountant agency was in between. In 2007, emcee Kang Ho-dong and actress Kim A-joong evaded taxes and they said tax accountant made a mistake in reporting. Prosecutors said they are investigating offshore tax evasion of Korean Wave celebrities working in China including actor Jang Geun-seok and singer Rain.
Song starred in "Autumn Story," "All In," "Full House" and "That Winter. The Wind Blows." She is Korea`s No. 1 actress who stirs up protective instinct even when she acts a cold character. The National Tax Service helped her tax evasion record not released publicly. The public admires top stars but at the same time feels deprived at the massive amount of money they earn for one drama episode. People are not stupid to believe celebrities blaming tax accountants. If Song wants to remain a loved star, she should bear in mind that she has to pay as much as she earns.