Wed, Mar 20, 2002 - Page 2 News List

Investigators confirm Olympiad bribery scam

STAFF WRITER

Tseng Jer-ming, a biology professor at National Taiwan Normal University, is brought to the Taipei District Prosecutors' Office last night.

PHOTO: HAKU HUANG, TAIPEI TIMES

The Taipei office of the Bureau of Investigation under the Ministry of Justice yesterday confirmed that the International Biology Olympiad results of Chen Chia-jen's (陳家楨) son, Chen Tsung-yu (陳宗佑), had indeed been tampered with.

Meanwhile, National Taiwan Normal University last night decided to fire Tseng Jer-ming (曾哲明), a biology professor at the university who also served as a judge in the Olympiad.

1,500th spot

With information from the Ta Tung Information Enterprise (大同資訊公司), the company in charge of the computer scoring for the contest, the investigators' preliminary investigation found that, of a perfect score of 160, Chen Tsung-yu's original grade in the first-round of the Olympiad was 68, which placed him in the 1,500th spot among all contestants.

It was found that Chen's grade had somehow later been boosted to 100.

This improved his rank to the 201st spot, which made him the last to make it onto the list for the second round of the contest.

The investigators said that they suspect more acts of grade-tampering existed in the second round and would continue to summon witness such as Tseng's assistant, Chen Hsian-tsu (陳仙姿), for further clarification on what happened to contestants' tests after they had been collected.

Last week, Chen Chia-jen (陳家楨) disclosed the bribery scam by accusing Tseng of tampering with his son's grade so that Chen Tsung-yu could make the cut.

Chen said that, in exchange, he had lent a total of NT$400,000 to Tang Ping-yuan (湯炳垣), a biology teacher at his son's school, and treated both Tang and Tseng to a hostess club to have sex with prostitutes.

Polygraph test

Tseng initially denied Chen's accusations of having sex with a prostitute and tampering with a contestant's grades. However, Tseng, along with Tang, failed a polygraph test given by investigators yesterday.

Investigators have also obtained evidence such as condoms and audio tapes from Chen Chia-jen. Tseng was asked to give a blood sample yesterday to be compared with DNA from a condom -- supplied by Chen as evidence of Tseng's sexual engagement with the prostitute.

Chen reportedly kept the condoms used by the two men in his refrigerator for use as evidence against them.

Meanwhile, Tang and Tseng were transferred last night to the Taipei Prosecutor's Office for further questioning.

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