The Taiwan High Court yesterday reduced former China Development Financial Holding Corp (中華開發金控) chairman Liu Tai-ying’s (劉泰英) sentence relating to the drawn-out Zanadau scandal to five years and 10 months from eight years in prison.
Prosecutors indicted Liu on four charges in June 2003 — breach of trust, embezzlement, violation of the corporation’s regulations and violation of tax laws.
Liu’s lawyers said they accepted three of the convictions, but said their client was not guilty of embezzlement.
“This is not over yet. We will appeal the embezzlement charge to the Supreme Court,” Liu’s defense attorney Chen Sung-dung (陳松棟) said.
The judges’ verdict also said that regardless of whether he files an appeal, Liu should report to prosecutors to begin his prison sentence sometime in the near future.
If he wins his appeal on the embezzlement charge, Liu could see a reduction in the length of his jail sentence.
The first ruling, sentencing Liu to eight years, was handed down by the Taipei District Court in June 2006.
The Zanadau case first came to light when Su Hui-chen (蘇惠珍), a majority shareholder in Zanadau Development Corp (新瑞都), organized a press conference at the Legislative Yuan on Sept. 16, 2002. Su said she had paid a bribe of NT$1.06 billion (US$32 million) to Lawson Corp (正暐) president Lee Ming-che (李明哲), a close friend of Liu, in return for Liu’s promise to help secure bank financing in 1995. The plan was for Lee Ming-che to share the money with Liu once the deal was completed, she said.
Lee Ming-che told Su that he would forward the money to Liu, but Su never found out whether Liu received the money.
Su never received the promised bank loan.
Su approached Liu for help at the time because Liu was chairman of the Chinese Nationalist Party’s (KMT) Investment and Business Management Committee.
Liu was once the treasurer of the KMT, though unofficially, and was a close friend of then-president Lee Teng-hui (李登輝). He was widely thought to have had absolute control over the KMT’s assets during Lee’s presidency.
Su accused Liu of breaking his promise after accepting the kickback.
While investigating the Zanadau case, prosecutors also discovered that Liu had used KMT assets to invest in companies for personal profit.
A host of irregularities and illegal practices were suspected in the case, involving several top business and political figures.
Lee Teng-hui and former KMT chairman Lien Chan (連戰) were among those who testified during the original trial.
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