Wed, Jan 30, 2008 - Page 3 News List

KMT's Chiang Lien-fu indicted

VOTE-BUYING Prosecutors seized video footage they say shows the legislator offering a township councilor NT$50,000 and asking him to distribute the money

By Rich Chang and FLOR WANG  /  STAFF REPORTERS

Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) Legislator Chiang Lien-fu aims a toy gun at a doll representing President Chen Shui-bian in the legislature on June 23, 2006. Prosecutors took aim at Chiang yesterday, indicting him for vote-buying.

PHOTO: SEAN CHAO, TAIPEI TIMES

Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) Legislator Chiang Lien-fu (江連福), who won re-election in Taichung County's third electoral district, was indicted yesterday on charges of vote-buying.

Chiang is the second legislator-elect to be indicted on suspicion of vote-buying after the KMT's Lee Yi-ting (李乙廷) of Miaoli County.

Prosecutors requested that the Taichung District Court sentence Chiang to five years in jail and to suspend his political rights for an additional five years.

Chiang is suspected of paying a Taiping Township (太平) councilor surnamed Lin NT$50,000 (US$1,500) to buy votes for him.

Prosecutors seized video footage of Chiang offering Lin the money and asking him to distribute it. Lin is not seen accepting the money.

Prosecutors said Chiang also attempted to bribe a relative of his Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) rival Chien Chao-tung (簡肇棟) with NT$50,000 in return for his support.

Four of Chiang's campaign staffers were indicted along with Chiang for their alleged involvement in the case.

Although Chiang and Lee have been indicted, they will assume their legislative seats on Friday. Prosecutors said they would file a suit with the district court seeking to annul Chiang's election win.

Chiang said after being indicted that he respected the judiciary and hoped the court would treat him fairly and clear his name.

When asked for comment in Tainan, KMT presidential candidate Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九) said he regretted the decision by prosecutors to indict Chiang, adding that he hoped the court would give Chiang a fair trial.

Ministry of Justice officials said yesterday several other legislators-elect would also be indicted based on evidence they had gathered.

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