Thu, Dec 12, 2002 - Page 2 News List

Prosecutors grill councilor

POST-ELECTION SCANDAL Prosecutors questioned a DPP legislator and his daughter, who was just re-elected as a Taipei City councilor, about vote-buying allegations

By Jimmy Chuang  /  STAFF REPORTER

DPP Legislator Yen Ching-fu and his daughter Yen Sheng-kuan, who won a Taipei City Council seat in last Saturday's elections, drives away from the Taipei District Prosecutors' Office after his daughter was questioned on vote-buying allegations.

PHOTO: FANG PIN-CHAO, TAIPEI TIMES

Taipei Prosecutors Tsai Hsing-hua (蔡興華) and Lai Shu-fan (賴淑芬) yesterday summoned DPP Taipei City Councilor Yen Sheng-kuan (顏聖冠), who was re-elected last Saturday, for allegedly buying votes but released her without any charges around noon.

"We've received tips that Yen allegedly bought votes by inviting voters to a free dinner party two weeks before election day, so we decided to summon her and learn what was going on from her in person," Lai said.

Lai said the Taipei District Prosecutors' Office received the information about the alleged vote-buying case before the election day but she did not elaborate.

According to the prosecutors' office, Yen held a huge campaign dinner party open to all her constituents two weeks before polling day. She had originally planned to charge admission by selling tickets for NT$500 each, but did not.

Yen responded to the summons yesterday morning, accompanied by her father Yen Ching-fu (顏錦福), a DPP legislator who co-founded the party 16 years ago.

She did not make any public comment regarding her summons and prosecutors did not comment after she was released.

However, her father told reporters outside the prosecutors office while his daughter was being interviewed that the dinner party was indeed a campaign dinner for his daughter's supporters and they did charge each voter NT$500 to attend. In addition, he said he was also the host and organizer of that dinner party so he would like to testify if necessary.

"We collected nearly NT$2 million from the voters in ticket charges at that dinner party. Since I was the host for the event, I will be more than happy to testify if prosecutors need me to do so," he said. "There was no need for my daughter to buy votes and we did not do it, either."

Yen Sheng-kuan, a 34-year-old Taipei City Councilor who possesses a master's degree in politics from George Washington University, just won her second term as a city councilor Saturday by 11,967 votes in Taipei's fifth constituency which covers the Chungcheng and Wanhua districts.

In the constituency, 17 candidates were running for seven seats. Among the seven winners, four of them are DPP members, including Yen.

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