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Tue, Nov 02, 1999 - Page 2 News List

Yunlin County candidate sues two DPP legislators

STAFF WRITER

Independent legislator Lo Fu-chu (?福助) filed a civil lawsuit against two DPP legislators for libel yesterday as accusations continue to mount over gangster involvement in the Yunlin County by-election race.

Lo filed a libel suit against DPP legislators Lee Wen-chung (李?憍?/CHINESE>) and Tsai Ming-hsien (1/22明憲) at the Taipei District Prosecutors' Office yesterday for accusing him of trying to meddle in the election campaign.

At a press conference on Saturday, the two DPP legislators had accused Lo of sending an army of gangsters to Yunlin County to help independent candidate Chang Jung-wei's (張榮肘?/CHINESE>) camp.

Lo's men entered the county on 20 chartered tour buses, the DPP legislators said.

Lo is the self-proclaimed "spiritual leader" of one of Taiwan's major crime syndicates -- the Tientao Alliance (??D).

The DPP legislators also said independent candidate Chang is involved in Lo's crime syndicate.

Yesterday, Lo called the accusations groundless and warned the two legislators that they could be jailed for their words, citing the fact that independent legislator Liao Hsueh-kuang (1躨Фs) had been given a five-month prison term on a similar charge.

DPP legislator Lee responded yesterday by calling Lo's legal action much more "civilized" than his previous behavior.

Lo has been accused of various reprisals against his political enemies. One of his bodyguards has been convicted for dragging independent legislator Liao out of his bed in the middle of the night and locking him in an abandoned dog kennel in Taipei County.

Chang, who had led in polls before the 921 earthquake, has fallen to third place after being linked to a construction company that built some buildings that collapsed in the earthquake, allegedly because of sub-standard construction.

DPP candidate Lin Chung-li (林??禮) is now leading the poll ratings, with KMT candidate Chang Cheng-hsiung (張正雄) close behind.

The by-election was originally scheduled to be held Oct. 16, but was postponed to Nov. 6 due to the Sept. 21 earthquake. Some analysts have said the result could sway the outcome of the March presidential election.

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