Shilin District Court Chief Judge Hung Ying-hua (洪英花) yesterday filed an appeal with the Control Yuan, accusing Judicial Yuan President Rai Hau-min (賴浩敏) and Judicial Yuan Secretary-General Lin Ching-fang (林錦芳) of political persecution.
Hung filed the charges after she was deemed unfit to be a chief judge by an anonymous vote conducted by the Judicial Yuan’s review committee in June. The Judicial Yuan is scheduled to convene a meeting on Monday to decide whether Hung should be removed from her post.
Hung yesterday said that when Rai took over the Judicial Yuan on Oct. 13, he amended regulations so that they allow him, via a review committee, to control the personnel arrangements for presiding judges.
“Rai has been busily engaged in political infighting since taking the helm of the Judicial Yuan. He is the one who’s not fit for the post and should step down,” Hung said.
Noting that Lin was a classmate of President Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九), Hung accused Lin of going along with Rai because he wanted to become a member of the Council of Grand Justices.
After filing her appeal with the Control Yuan, where she said she hopes the government watchdog will censure Rai and Lin, Hung proceeded to the Judicial Yuan and submitted an appeal for state compensation of NT$1.5 million (US$50,240) because of the damage to her reputation.
Hung is a relatively well-known judge who has been critical of the procedural aspects of former president Chen Shui-bian’s (陳水扁) corruption trial.
In December 2008, a panel of judges ordered that Judge Chou Chan-chun (周占春) be replaced by Judge Tsai Shou-hsun (蔡守訓) in the corruption and money laundering trial of the former president and 12 co-defendants. The switch elicited speculation that the decision was procedurally flawed and politically motivated.
At the time, Hung published an article criticizing the switching of judges, saying it was illegal and that it had rendered the guilty verdict Tsai handed down to the former president invalid.
Declining to comment on the Hung case, Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) Deputy Secretary-General Hsieh Kuo-liang (謝國樑) said the best way to solve issues concerning judges is to set up an assessment system to determine whether a judge is suitable for the post.
Democratic Progressive Party caucus whip Ker Chien-ming (柯建銘), on the other hand, accused Ma of seeking to control the judiciary by purging anyone who opposes him through review committees and assessment systems.