Sat, Apr 07, 2018 - Page 1 News List

Proposal to cancel pensions to be reviewed

By Tseng Wei-chen  /  Staff reporter

Retired major-general Hsu Nai-chuan arrives to attend the court’s ruling on his involvement in the largest espionage case in Taiwan’s history at the Taiwan High Court in Taipei on April 27, 2016.

Photo: Chen Chih-chu, Taipei Times

The Legislative Yuan’s Internal Administration Committee on Monday is to review a proposed amendment to the National Security Act (國家安全法) that would cancel and confiscate pensions for military retirees convicted of leaking state secrets.

The amendment was proposed by Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) Legislator Chen Chi-mai (陳其邁) to close a loophole in regulations stipulating that the leaking of state secrets by military personnel after retirement does not result in their pension being canceled, as the case of retired major general Hsu Nai-chuan (許乃權), who was involved in the largest espionage case in the nation’s history.

Hsu was found guilty of leaking secrets to the Chinese Communist Party, but is still eligible to receive 70 percent of his original pension after serving his 34-month prison term, which ended in September last year.

Under the Act of Military Service for Officers and Noncommissioned Officers of the Armed Forces (陸海空軍軍官士官服役條例), military retirees are only stripped of their pensions when they are found guilty of treason, are sentenced to life in prison or to death during their service, or are discharged for breaching the Punishment Act of the Armed Forces (陸海空軍懲罰法).

Despite amendments made in 2016, the National Security Act does not cover former military personnel who leak state secrets during their service, but who are convicted after retirement.

At present, military personnel’s pension would be canceled if they are sentenced to a prison term of seven years or longer; halved if the prison term is between three to seven years; reduced by 30 percent if the prison term is between two and three years; or reduced by 2 percent if they are handed a prison term of between one and two years.

Therefore, Hsu is still entitled to 70 percent of his original pension, or about NT$70,000 per month.

The draft amendment is an addendum proposing to cancel pensions to former military personnel if they breach the National Security Act, the National Security Information Protection Act (國家機密保護法) or the National Intelligence Services Act (國家情報工作法), and confiscate pensions already paid.

Meanwhile, a draft amendment to the Act of Military Service for Officers and Noncommissioned Officers of the Armed Forces, initiated by DPP Legislator Liu Shih-fang (劉世芳), seeks to cancel pension payments to active or retired military personnel and confiscate the sum they have already received if they are convicted of leaking intelligence.

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