Thu, Dec 02, 2004 - Page 11 News List

Tsann Kuen Co founder indicted on fraud charges

By Jimmy Chuang  /  STAFF REPORTER

Taipei prosecutors indicted Wu Tsann-kuen (吳燦坤), founder and chairman of the Tsann Kuen Enterprise Co (3C, 燦坤實業), on charges of fraud and violations of the Securities and Exchange Law (證交法) yesterday.

In addition to Wu, Taipei Prosecutor Chu Ying-hsiang (朱應翔) also indicted five other Tsann Kuen employees and stock brokers for helping Wu illegally sell shares in a Tsann Kuen unit. Chu did not suggest any sentence for the men in his indictment.

"Wu insisted that he did not know about the crime during previous interrogations. But we decided not to accept his argument since he is supposed to take the responsibility as a head of the company," said Lin Bang-liang (林邦樑), spokesman of the Taipei District Prosecutors Office.

Wu felt sorry about the indictment but he insisted that he was innocent, Tsann Kuen vice president and spokesman Tien Chu-ying (田竹英) told reporters yesterday.

"Judges will eventually prove [him] innocent during trial," Tien said on Wu's behalf.

Tsann Kuen was probed by prosecutors for selling its US over-the-counter stocks, registered under the name of Eupa International Inc (燦坤美國國際公司), to Taiwanese investors three years ago. To raise investor interest in the stocks, the company had claimed that Eupa would be upgraded to trade on the NASDAQ market, a move that allegedly helped raise around NT$100 million for the company. The upgrade never happened and more than 35 investors accused Tsann Kuen for cheating as Eupa share prices has dropped to around US$0.10 per share from the US$8 to US$10 per share they paid three years ago.

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