Mon, Dec 08, 2008 - Page 3 News List

Palau rebuts Chiu claims

STAFF WRITER

Claims by Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) legislator Chiu Yi (邱毅) last week that he received information from Palau president-elect Johnson Toribiong alleging that former president Chen Shui-bian (陳水扁) sent money to an account in Palau was rebutted by Toribiong’s office in a statement on Thursday.

Chiu alleged on Tuesday that Chen had sent NT$170 million (US$5.05 million) into a First Bank account in Palau during a visit in September 2006.

“This is pure fabrication, as I have never spoken to this lawmaker [from] Taiwan or have been contacted by any news media on this issue,” the statement issued by Toribiong’s office said.

The statement added that Toribiong “is seeking legal representation in Taiwan to investigate the matter and for a possible lawsuit.”

On Wednesday, Chen’s office also issued a statement condemning the allegations made by Chiu and by KMT Legislator Alex Tsai (蔡正元) that Chen took advantage of 2006 state visit to Palau to send NT$170 million there. Chen’s office urged the KMT to restrain the words and actions of its members to avoid unwarranted claims and vengeful acts.

Chen was taken into custody on Nov. 12 on suspicion of money laundering, taking bribes, forgery and embezzlement during his two terms in office.

Chen denies any wrongdoing.

ADDITIONAL REPORTING BY CNA

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