Chen not beaten in prison
The office of former president Chen Shui-bian (陳水扁) yesterday rebutted an op-ed article that said Chen was beaten and discriminated against in prison. “It was a completely groundless rumor,” Chiang Chih-ming (江志銘), secretary of Chen’s office and a Taipei City councilor, said in response to an op-ed piece published by the Chinese-language Taiwan Times yesterday. Tsai Tien-li (蔡天禮), a self-proclaimed researcher at an unidentified university, wrote in an opinion piece that Chen, who is serving a 17-and-a-half-year sentence at Taipei Prison for corruption, was beaten in prison and that inmates spit and urinated on his food. According to Chiang, Taiwan North Society chairman Chou Fu-nan (周福南) visited Chen yesterday afternoon and asked Chen about what was described in Tsai’s article. Chen denied it, saying he was neither beaten nor mistreated by other inmates, but added it was true that the roof of his room was leaking, Chiang said.
Pingtung speaker guilty
Suspended Pingtung County Council speaker Lin Ching-tu (林清都) was yesterday sentenced to five-and-a-half years in prison for vote-buying when he was running for the position last year. The Taiwan High Court’s Kaohsiung branch handed down the verdict, which also includes a fine of NT$2.5 million (US$82,450). Lin’s secretary, Huang Chung-yu (黃宗裕), said Lin would file an appeal. Lin was found guilty by the Pingtung District Court in May of bribing councilors during his campaign for the council speaker election on March 1 last year. The court sentenced him to six years in prison and a fine of NT$3 million. He was then suspended from his duties by the Ministry of the Interior.