Fri, Oct 06, 2006 - Page 2 News List

Immigration official detained for theft

STAFF WRITER , WITH CNA

The Taoyuan District Prosecutors' Office detained a ranking police officer at the Bureau of Immigration yesterday on suspicion that he made as much as NT$800 million (US$24.2 million) by selling stolen re-entry permits to criminal rings, according to an office spokesman.

The prosecutors' office said that Tsui Ta-wei (崔大偉), a superintendent at the Bureau of Immigration, allegedly stole more than 2,000 reserve re-entry permits while he was serving at the Tainan County Police Bureau's foreign affairs division.

Tsui then sold the permits to a foreign laborer brokerage firm, the spokesman said.

The certificates later wound up in the hands of human-trafficking rings, the spokesman said.

Tsui might have made more than NT$800 million by selling the certificates -- valued at NT$400,000 apiece, prosecutors said.

An investigation is underway to determine if other police officers were involved.

Prosecutors said the stolen permits were used to help foreign workers enter the country.

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