Thu, Jan 13, 2005 - Page 4 News List

High Court reduces PFP legislator's jail sentence

By Jimmy Chuang  /  STAFF REPORTER

The Taiwan High Court yesterday sentenced People First Party Legislator Fu Kun-chi (傅崑萁) to four years in jail and a fine of NT$60 million (US$1.87 million) for illegally speculating in the Taiwan Pineapple Group's stocks in 1998.

After he receives the court's official verdict, which usually takes seven to 10 days, Fu will have 10 days in which he can file an appeal.

As of press time yesterday, Fu had not said whether he will appeal.

The Taipei District Court on May 1, 2003, sentenced Fu to six years in jail and a fine of NT$35 million for speculation and money laundering.

"The verdict of the second instance reduced the length of Fu's sentence because the evidence of money laundering was very vague," the High Court verdict read.

Fu was first indicted on speculation charges on Feb. 2, 2000. During the ensuing hearings, he insisted that he had merely been following government policy by trying to "do something" to help the nation's economy after it slowed down as a result of the 1997 Asian financial crisis.

"I did nothing but buy some stocks from the Taiwan Pineapple Company. Is that a crime?" Fu said in his statement to the court.

Former Taiwan Pineapple Group chairman Huang Tsung-hung (黃宗宏) was sentenced to five years in jail and a fine of NT$150 million while stock brokers Lin Chia-chen (林家榛) and Lin Wei-kang (林為康) were both sentenced to two years in jail on the same charges.

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