Tue, Mar 26, 2002 - Page 1 News List

Calls grow for probe of PFP in security scandal

TRAITORS?The TSU and DPP say the opposition party undermined national security by distributing information about the National Security Bureau's secret accounts

By Lin Mei-chun  /  STAFF REPORTER

TSU lawmakers yesterday visit Minister of Justice Chen Ding-nan, right, urging him to take immediate action to investigate the PFP's role in the disclosure of the National Security Bureau's secret accounts.


The justice and interior ministries said yesterday that they would look into the PFP's role in the disclosure of details of secret accounts at the National Security Bureau (NSB).

Minister of Justice Chen Ding-nan (陳定南) said he would forward to prosecutors documents given to him by TSU lawmakers. Prosecutors will then decide if there's enough evidence to justify a search of the PFP's headquarters.

Minister of the Interior Yu Cheng-hsien (余政憲) said a meeting would be held next week to determine whether the PFP's behavior in the scandal warrants punishment.

The China Times and Next magazine reported last week that during former president Lee Teng-hui's (李登輝) time in office, the NSB had set up two secret accounts, worth NT$3.5 billion, that were beyond legislative supervision.

The revelations have sparked a war of words between TSU and PFP legislators. Both parties have come out in defense of their leaders, PFP Chairman James Soong (宋楚瑜) and the TSU's guru, Lee.

The reports in the China Times and Next referred to the two secret NSB accounts as Lee's "private stash." The reports cited information believed to have been provided by the bureau's former chief cashier, Colonel Liu Kuan-chun (劉冠軍), who is wanted for allegedly embezzling NT$192 million.

Critics have said the revelations have undermined the nation's diplomatic ties as well as information-gathering efforts in China and elsewhere.

The TSU has accused Soong of masterminding the revelations in an effort to undermine Lee.

Eight TSU lawmakers met with Chen yesterday to provide what they said was "solid evidence" to prove that the PFP had disseminated information about the secret accounts. They said they believe the PFP is still in possession of a large number of confidential documents provided by Liu.

PFP lawmakers said last week they were in possession of documents related to the NSB accounts. They said they turned over all of their documents to the Control Yuan -- the country's top watchdog body -- for investigation.

TSU legislative whip Hsu Deng-koun (許登宮) said he hoped PFP lawmakers would explain how they obtained the documents. He said investigators should search the PFP's headquarters if an explanation was not forthcoming.

TSU lawmakers yesterday said they have several reasons to believe the PFP distributed documents about the NSB's accounts.

They noted that Chang Hsien-yao (張顯耀), director of the PFP's Policy Research Center, is a former official with the National Security Council -- which oversees the NSB.

They also cast suspicion on Hsieh Chung-liang (謝忠良), the reporter who wrote Next's cover story and the younger brother of PFP spokesman Hsieh Kung-ping (謝公秉). The TSU lawmakers said Hsieh has frequently visited China.

They also claim Soong contacted Liu during a recent trip to the US.

Calling the PFP a "pro-unification party," Hsu accused it of attempting to topple the government and said "the PFP and Beijing share the same purposes."

PFP Legislator Diane Lee (李慶安) said yesterday that her party would resort to "extreme measures" if prosecutors dare to search its headquarters.

Other PFP lawmakers said the TSU should provide the evidence to back up its accusations.

Meanwhile, DPP and TSU law-makers presented a petition to the Ministry of the Interior yesterday, calling for an investigation into whether the PFP violated the Constitution.

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