Sat, Nov 25, 2006 - Page 3 News List

DPP sues Ma for embezzlement

TIT FOR TAT Upset at the DPP's accusations, a KMT official slammed back with a lawsuit against DPP Chairman Yu and four lawmakers, accusing them of slander

By Mo Yan-chih  /  STAFF REPORTER

From left to right, Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) legislative caucus whip Ker Chien-ming, DPP Taipei City Councilor candidate Chuang Cheng-hsiung and DPP Chairman Yu Shyi-kun enter the Taiwan High Court Prosecutors' Office's Black Gold Investigation Center yesterday to file a lawsuit against Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) Chairman Ma Ying-jeou over his handling of the party's assets.


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 (柯建銘), Yeh Yi-chin (葉宜津) and Chen Ching-jun (陳景峻) accused Ma of maneuvering to ensure that he personally benefited from the sale of the KMT's assets and urged him to publish detailed records of the asset sales, while calling on the prosecutors to reveal the truth.


"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), Kao Jyh-peng (高志鵬) Chuang Suo-hang (莊碩漢) and Chao Yung-chin (趙永清) -- who had made the same accusations on Thursday, for slander.


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.

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