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Wed, Dec 20, 2000 - Page 2 News List

Anti-`black gold' crackdown nets 70 officials since June

By Jou Ying-cheng  /  STAFF REPORTER

Some 70 elected local officials from the borough warden level up have been indicted since June in the government's war against "black gold," according to newly released statistics from the Ministry of Justice.

Meanwhile, prosecutors yesterday continued to question possible suspects and conduct raids in connection with several cases.

The chief of Lukang township (鹿港), Changhua County, was questioned about suspected bid-rigging in a local park construction project, but they later released him on NT$1 million bail.

In a separate case concerning an embankment construction project, prosecutors raided the town hall of Tacheng township (大城), Changhua County, and took some officials in for questioning. As of press time no detention or releases had been reported.

In Taichung County, prosecutors searched the home of the Shalu (沙鹿) township chief and the town hall in connection to bid-rigging cases, reports said last evening. But no further details of the cases have been officially released.

Among the approximately 70 people already under indictiment are one county commissioner, one city mayor, seven township chiefs, seven borough wardens and village chiefs, two legislators, 24 county councilors and 26 township councilors.

The county commissioner is Fu Hsueh-peng (傅學鵬) of Miaoli County, who faces charges of misappropriating public funds while deputy speaker of the county council.

George Chang (張燦鍙), DPP mayor of Tainan, was indicted for allegedly covering up the corrupt practices of his subordinates. The prosecution requested that he be sentenced to 12 years in jail.

Two of the indicted legislators are the KMT's You Hwai-yin (游淮銀) and independent Lin Jui-tu (林瑞圖). You, chairman of two securities companies, allegedly used a closed-end mutual fund to manipulate the price of a publicly traded company. Lin was indicted for fraud.

Last Friday, Changhua District Prosecutors' Office indicted 215 people involved in vote-buying for KMT candidates in the March presidential election, including Yuanlin township (員林) chief Hsu Chiung-tsung (許瓊聰) and five borough wardens.

On the same day, Taitung County prosecutors indicted 19 current and 22 former county councilors, including the incumbent speaker and vice speaker, on corruption charges. Taitung County Council has a total of 29 councilors.

Last month, the township chief and all 13 councilors of Huwei township (虎尾), central Taiwan, were indicted together for alleged conspiracy in bid-rigging to squeeze money out of local construction budgets.

Nantou County Commissioner Peng Pai-hsien (彭百顯) and Hsinchu Municipal Council Speaker Cheng Cheng-kuang (鄭成光) have been remanded in custody both on separate corruption charges in connection with mishandling of post-921 earthquake relief funds.

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