Tue, Oct 07, 2003 - Page 3 News List

Prosecutors search KMT legislator's offices


Police and prosecutors seize documents and a computer from the office of KMT Legislator Ho Chih-hui in Miaoli City yesterday.


Prosecutors yesterday searched KMT Legislator Ho Chih-hui's (何智輝) offices in Taipei and Miaoli in connection with a suspected illegal bank loan taken on inadequate collateral while Ho was Miaoli County commissioner, Chinese-language media said.

The prosecutors searched 10 locations, including Ho's constituency office in Miaoli and the house of Shihtan Township chief Ku Yuan-yu (古源毓), who was a partner in the development project. Ho's other offices in Taipei were also raided.

Prosecutors discovered the case while investigating another corruption case involving the acquisition of a tract of land in the Hsinchu Science-Based Industrial Park, the report said.

Prosecutors suspect that Ho was involved in an illegal NT$1.1 billion bank loan taken without adequate collateral during the Chiuchun development project in Miaoli City. Prosecutors suspect Ho gained more than NT$200 million for brokering the loan deal.

Police have also summoned Ku's father, Ku Shih-jung (古石榮), for questioning.

Ku Yuan-yu's family members claimed that his father merely served as a front man in the development project and his investment in it was minimal.

Ku Yuan-yu said that Ho bought a tract of land under his father's name more than a decade ago. The land later became the site of the Chiuchun project.

Ku Yuan-yu told reporters yesterday that his father merely "lent" his status as a farmer to Ho so that Ho could buy the land.

Prosecutors have also summoned officials from the Miaoli County Government.

Ho has not yet been summoned for questioning.

As a legislator, Ho is protected by the constitutional immunity that shields him from prosecution while the Legislative Yuan is in session.

Ho is also being investigated for suspected influence-peddling in the acquisition of a tract of land in the Hsinchu industrial park. Prosecutors said that Ho pressured officials at the National Science Council, saying he could change the status of a desired tract of land from "mountain slope" to "industrial land."

The council paid NT$8.8 million per hectare for the acquisition, the report said.

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