Fri, Dec 28, 2001 - Page 1 News List

Police may interrogate ex-mayor

SEX-VCD SCANDAL One witness in the case said that the former Hsinchu mayor accompanied Kuo Yu-ling during a visit to a private detective agency to ask about hidden cameras

By Jimmy Chuang  /  STAFF REPORTER

Taipei prosecutors investigating the Chu Mei-feng (璩美鳳) sex-VCD case yesterday said they may seek an interview with Tsai Jen-chien (蔡仁堅), Chu's ex-boyfriend and the former mayor of Hsinchu.

Investigators say Tsai's testimony may be crucial to the case.

According to one witness, Tsai accompanied Kuo Yu-ling (郭玉鈴) -- a major suspect in the investigation -- on a visit to a private-detective agency in which Kuo inquired about hidden cameras.

Kuo, a "spiritual-growth" instructor and Chu's former friend, was detained by prosecutors on Wednesday.

"According to Kuo's statements, she admitted that she hired a private detective agency in Hsinchu to install the hidden camera at Chu's Tamsui apartment," Chen Hung-ta (陳宏達), spokesman for the Taipei District Prosecutors' Office, said yesterday.

According to Chen, Tsai and Kuo visited a private detective agency together. Kuo had asked about details concerning hidden cameras, the spokesman said.

"The detective agency's employees told us that Tsai once showed up with Kuo at the shop to ask for information about installing a hidden camera," Chen said. "At this time, he's still not on the suspect list, but we will definitely interview him when necessary."

Tsai was unavailable for comment yesterday.

Though Kuo concedes she installed a pinhole camera in Chu's apartment, she said she did so at Chu's request.

Lee Ming-yu (李明諭), Kuo's attorney, said yesterday that his client doesn't believe investigators should focus their attention on the former Hsinchu mayor.

"Kuo said that it is impossible for Tsai to be involved," Lee told reporters yesterday after meeting with Kuo in her prison cell.

"She said that she didn't understand why Tsai was now a suspect, as Chu was the one who asked her to install the hidden camera. Tsai had nothing to do with this."

Prosecutors and police conducted additional searches of Chu's Tamsui apartment yesterday. Investigators uncovered two hidden audio recorders and two tapes. The search was still continuing as of press time yesterday.

Investigators also found fingerprints that belong to neither Chu, Kuo, Tsai nor Tseng Chung-ming (曾仲銘), the married businessman that allegedly appears in the 40-minute sex video distributed by Scoop Weekly last week.

"Almost all of the fingerprints [found so far] belong to Chu, Tseng, Kuo and Tsai," Chen said. "But we found one set of fingerprints that doesn't belong to anyone who can be placed at the scene. Investigators are now ... trying to find out the identity of that person."

Investigators yesterday also searched the offices of Hsinchu's Cultural Affairs Bureau, where Chu served as director until August this year.

With the help of a local private-detective agency, investigators uncovered special cables attached to the computer of Tseng Huan-peng (曾煥鵬), the current head of the bureau.

Tseng's office was formerly used by Chu. Investigators believe the cables at one time could have been attached to device for recording video or audio.

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