Thu, Aug 15, 2019 - Page 1 News List

Hamburg office director demoted after accusation

By Lin Chia-nan  /  Staff reporter

Then-director of the Hamburg bureau of the Taipei Representative Office in Germany Shen Wen-chiang, left, poses at a trade show in an undated photograph.

Photo from Taipei Representative Office in Hamburg Web site

Former director of the Hamburg bureau of the Taipei Representative Office in Germany Shen Wen-chiang (沈文強) has been demoted to a position in Taipei after he was accused of sexual harassment, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs said yesterday.

Shen allegedly repeatedly asked a female subordinate on dates and touched her inappropriately during his tenure in Germany, the Chinese-language Mirror Media reported yesterday.

The ministry on July 3 in an e-mail to the person who reported the case said that it had punished Shen under its sexual harassment prevention guidelines and the Civil Servants Evaluation Act (公務人員考績法), and has informed the Control Yuan about the situation, the magazine said.

Sources told the publication that Shen was given a warning and had been transferred to work as a consul general on home assignment at the ministry’s International Information Services in Taipei.

The magazine added that the ministry might be downplaying the case, as Shen is Minister of Economic Affairs Shen Jong-chin’s (沈榮津) nephew.

The foreign ministry in a statement confirmed the incident, but said that some details in the magazine report were incorrect.

After it received the complaint on July 1 last year, the ministry set up a special committee to investigate, and on Aug. 21 last year it recalled Shen Wen-chiang to the ministry’s office in Taipei before his assignment in Hamburg had concluded, it said.

The ministry also gave him an official a warning and demoted him to a nonmanagerial position, it added.

Its investigation found no evidence of inappropriate physical contact, although both parties confirmed that there were improper text messages and telephone calls, it said.

The ministry always adopts a “zero-tolerance stance” toward sexual harassment and decides on disciplinary action according to the law and severity of the situation, it added in response to the magazine’s accusation that it has downplayed the case.

Additional reporting by CNA

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