Tue, Jul 21, 2009 - Page 3 News List

Ex-lawmaker appeals for father

YUNLIN POLITICS Chang Sho-wen says prosecutors are trying to frame his father on vote-buying charges and that his father should be allowed to run in a KMT primary

By Flora Wang  /  STAFF REPORTER

Former Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) legislator Chang Sho-wen defends his father at the legislature yesterday, accusing Yunlin prosecutor Huang Yu-feng of colluding with witnesses to bring accusations against his father.

PHOTO: CHANG CHIA-MING, TAIPEI TIMES

Former Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) legislator Chang Sho-wen (張碩文), whose election victory was annulled on vote-buying charges, urged the KMT yesterday not to be ungrateful to his family after the KMT’s Yunlin chapter disqualified his father from a legislative by-election because of his alleged involvement in his son’s vote-buying.

He accused Yunlin prosecutors of conspiring to frame his father Chang Hui-yuan (張輝元), head of an irrigation association in Yunlin, as part of their investigation into the vote-buying allegations.

Chang Sho-wen showed a press conference at the legislature video footage of a conversation between a lawyer and a witness in his father’s case, in which the lawyer says they must “discuss with prosecutors what to say against Chang Hui-yuan.”

“[Prosecutors] fabricated witness statements and colluded [with witnesses] in Chang Hui-yuan’s case,” Chang Sho-wen said. “Mr Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九) said he hoped future politicians will have integrity, ideals, love for the people and principles. Doesn’t Chang Hui-yuan fit the profile?”

Chang Sho-wen was found guilty of election bribery at his first trial in Yunlin. Prosecutors alleged that his father solicited votes for his son by offering cash bribes to voters during last year’s legislative elections.

The Tainan branch of the Taiwan High Court annulled Chang Sho-wen’s election victory on June 30 on the ground that he was aware of and had taken part in the vote-buying scheme allegedly organized by his father. The annulment was a civil suit.

Chang Hui-yuan, who is in his 70s, then registered in the KMT’s primary for the by-election.

The KMT’s Yunlin chapter ruled in a preliminary review on Sunday to disqualify Chang Hui-yuan as a result of the party’s “black gold exclusion clause,” which states that members who are found guilty of corruption in their first trial cannot to be nominated for any elections.

“We could have announced that we would run as an independent candidate, but we would rather not do that because we did not do anything wrong,” Chang Sho-wen said.

“We are faithful party members. I cannot be ungrateful to the KMT, but if the KMT chooses to be ungrateful to us, we will have no choice but to follow the voice of grassroots supporters,” he said.

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