Accusing Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) Chairman Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九) of profiting from the sale of party assets, the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) yesterday filed a lawsuit charging the KMT chief with embezzlement.
DPP Chairman Yu Shyi-kun, caucus whips Ker Chien-ming (
"The KMT wanted to amend its party regulations for Ma. Does that mean that Ma has the money from the [asset] sales and no one else can represent the party in the 2008 presidential election?" Yu said during a press conference in the Legislative Yuan.
According to the DPP, the KMT had a deal with the buyers which guaranteed that the party received a share of the profits when the buyer disposed of assets bought from the KMT.
In the case of the sale of three media assets to a subsidiary of the China Times Group last December, the post-sale kickback was as much as NT$11.21 billion (US$341.35 million), Yu claimed.
"The KMT has been trying to delay the passage of the party asset bill in the legislature. Almost every asset sale of the KMT is problematic, but the party tried to sell as many assets as possible," Ker said, urging Ma to stop selling more assets.
Accusing the KMT of taking the money to assist Ma in the 2008 presidential election, the three urged Ma to publicize detailed records of each sale.
The four then proceeded to the Taiwan High Court Prosecutors' Office's Black Gold Investigation Center to file a lawsuit against Ma, KMT Administration and Management Committee Director-General Chang Che-shen (張哲琛), China Times Group chairman Albert Yu (余建新) and Central Motion Picture Co chairman Alex Tsai (蔡正元), accusing them of embezzlement.
Upset at the DPP's accusations, Chang later went to the Taipei Prosecutors' Office to file a lawsuit against Yu and four party legislators -- Huang Chao-hui (黃昭
Chang argued that the DPP had ignored the debts that the KMT's assets had accrued when they they were sold.
According to Chang, Hua Hsia -- which manages part of the KMT's assets -- had debts of NT$5.3 billion and the three media outlets carried debts of NT$5.9 billion when they were sold.
Given this, NT$4 billion was a reasonable price, Chang said.
"The deal was made to guarantee the final selling price and protect the rights of the buyer. There was no money-laundering or profit-making involved," Chang said.