Wed, Jan 12, 2011 - Page 1 News List

Fugitive suspected gangster talks politics

By Ko Shu-ling  /  Staff Reporter

Chang An-le (張安樂), a fugitive former leader of the Bamboo Union gang, said in China yesterday that he would seek to return to Taiwan “in the near future” to help push Hong Kong’s “one country, two systems” model for Taiwan, the Chinese-language United Daily News reported.

Chang, also known as “White Wolf,” established the China Unification Promotion Party in September 2005. He has since shown support for the “one China” principle and spoken out against Taiwanese independence.

He said yesterday that he did not mind being labeled a sympathizer of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) or a gangster and that he simply wanted to return to Taiwan to make “some contributions” to improving cross-strait ties.

“I want more Taiwanese to understand that the only way to maintain the ‘status quo’ across the Taiwan Strait is to complete negotiations on the ‘one country, two systems’ [principle] with the CCP,” he said. “I hope I can do something to push peaceful unification as long as I am alive.”

After he returns, Chang said he would try to form a “third political force” to cultivate politicians who sympathize with the CCP and nominate candidates to run for public office. They would also establish local offices around the nation to push the “one country, two systems” model implemented in Hong Kong following retrocession in 1997.

Although Taipei and Beijing signed an agreement on mutual judicial assistance and cross-strait cooperation to fight crime in June 2009, Chang — who is wanted by Taiwanese authorities and has a successful business career in China — has remained a fugitive since he fled to China in 1996.

“If I committed any crime, it might have been my involvement with a crime syndicate,” he said. “However, what matters is whether a person is involved in the crime the syndicate commits rather than whether that person is in the crime organization.”

The Mainland Affairs Council (MAC) was low-key about Chang’s plans to return to Taiwan.

MAC Deputy Minister Liu Te-shun (劉德勳) said it was a matter of public security and that the media should turn to law enforcement agencies for comment.

Asked for comment, Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) Spokesman Su Jun-pin (蘇俊賓) said the party had no knowledge of Chang’s plans to return to Taiwan and added that if he were to return, the government would handle the matter in accordance with the law.

Su declined to comment on Chang’s alleged close ties with some KMT members.

In 2007, President Ma Ying-jeou’s (馬英九) elder sister, Ma Yi-nan (馬以南), met Chang during a campaign party for Ma, who was running for president at the time, in Shenzhen, China.

Ma Ying-jeou’s campaign team later confirmed the meeting, but denied that Chang had donated money to Ma Ying-jeou’s campaign.

Chang is also believed to have orchestrated a series of “protests” against a visit by exiled Tibetan spiritual leader the Dalai Lama during a visit to Taiwan in August 2009 and to have mobilized gang members to ensure security at political events in Taiwan.

Meanwhile, a Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) official said there were unresolved questions about Chang’s relationship with the KMT and that the government should make it clear he would still be prosecuted if he returned to Taiwan.

“The KMT still owes us an explanation on their relationship with the … fugitive,” the official said on condition of anonymity

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