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Fri, Jan 28, 2000 - Page 2 News List

Chang's alleged mistress begins newspaper lawsuit

STAFF WRITER

A woman who was named in a sex scandal that forced then-Presidential Office secretary-general John Chang (章孝嚴) to resign from his post in disgrace formally hit back at her accusers yesterday, launching a lawsuit against the China Times Express.

After attending the first court hearing yesterday in a defamation lawsuit she brought against the newspaper, Wang Hsiao-chan (王筱蟬) reiterated that she had never engaged in any sort of extramarital relationship with Chang.

Chang resigned from his post on Dec. 22 last year, a day after the Chinese-language evening newspaper Power News (勁報) first broke the story about his affair with a then-unnamed woman. Later media reports identified Wang as the figure behind the scandal.

Chang admitted that due to "personal factors," he was no longer able to properly fulfill his duties, and that he had therefore requested permission to leave office as soon as possible.

Wang said her colleagues will testify that she was attending a meeting at her company on Nov. 10, when Chang allegedly signed a note in a local five-star hotel promising to divorce his wife.

The note was the prime evidence used by the press in breaking the story.

Wang said she had named the China Times Express in her lawsuit because of an article that appeared in its Dec. 29 edition, in which a photograph of the note in question appeared, with her name on it.

The name had been partially obscured, but the newspaper claimed it had used a computer algorithm to recreate her name and back up its story.

Wang added she had enough evidence to disprove claims of her alleged trysts with Chang, as has been reported in the media.

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