The Taipei District Court yesterday released the chairman of Eastern Multimedia Group (EMG) Gary Wang (王令麟) on bail of NT$350 million (US$11.5 million), the highest figure in the country’s judicial history.
Wang’s family took around five hours to collect the sum after the figure was announced earlier yesterday.
Wang’s lawyer Chi Jeen-nan (紀鎮南) told reporters after the hearing yesterday morning that he appreciated the court’s decision to free Wang.
He said the court had prohibited Wang from moving from his current residence, asked him to report to a police station near his residence every evening and prohibited him from discussing the case with other defendants after he is released.
Chi said he believed Wang would follow the rules.
Chi said that prosecutors have already prohibited Wang from leaving the country.
But Taipei prosecutors yesterday immediately lodged an appeal with the Taiwan High Court, asking it to order the district court to reverse the decision to release Wang.
Prosecutors have claimed that Wang made illegal profits from the sale of a majority stake in Eastern Multimedia to the US-based Carlyle Group.
They said Wang bought the cable operator’s shares before the sale to Carlyle was announced and later profited from selling them at a higher price to the equity firm.
The sale, in April last year, was valued at US$1.3 billion.
Wang also embezzled NT$17.48 billion from Asia Pacific Broadband Telecom Co (亞太固網), a local fixed-line operator and a subsidiary of the Eastern Multimedia Group, prosecutors said.
Prosecutors also suspect Wang embezzled NT$3.59 billion from the sale of one of the group’s properties to Union Insurance Co (友聯產險).
Gary Wang is the son of Rebar Asia Pacific Group (力霸亞太企業集團) founder Wang You-theng (王又曾), who is suspected of having embezzled billions of dollars in corporate funds from the group before fleeing with his wife to China in late 2006 and then to the US in January last year.
Taiwanese authorities placed the couple on the country’s most-wanted list on Jan. 15 last year and have been seeking assistance from the US to have them repatriated.
Gary Wang, Wang You-theng, members of the Wang family and Gary Wang’s associates are suspected of embezzling a total of NT$41.2 billion from the Rebar Group.