Sat, Aug 25, 2007 - Page 4 News List

Top suspect in baseball scam released

By Jimmy Chuang  /  STAFF REPORTER

Tainan prosecutors yesterday failed in their attempt to detain Tainan County Council spokesman Wu Chien-pao (吳健保) for his alleged involvement in a baseball gambling syndicate after judges decided to release him.

Prosecutors had accused Wu of running a gambling ring on the results of local professional baseball games and also asking players to throw games.

"We have released Wu and the baseball players we have interviewed because judges believed that there was no need to detain them at the moment," said Kuo Chen-ni (郭珍妮), spokeswoman for the Tainan District Prosecutors' Office.

Kuo said that Wu had been the suspected mastermind behind the alleged gambling operation.

Prosecutors also investigated claims that he had asked the captain of the Chinatrust Whales, Tseng Han-chou (曾漢州), to persuade his teammates to influence the outcome of certain games.

Prosecutors allege that Wu has earned NT$70 million (US$2.1 million) over the past few months.

Their investigations showed that the total amount bet on the games each week exceeded NT$1.4 billion.

Kuo said that prosecutors had talked to 18 witnesses and five Chinatrust players by press time last night.

All of them were released, but the investigation and questioning would continue, she said.

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