Former Waterland Financial Holding chairman Walter Lin (林華德), who is serving a two-year prison term for his role in the Sogo ownership scandal, has been granted parole and is expected to leave prison soon, a Ministry of Justice official said.
Wu Hsien-chang (吳憲璋), head of the Department of Corrections, told reporters that Lin, who started his prison term in October 2010 and has completed half of his sentence, recently applied to be released on parole, an application which the ministry approved on Thursday.
Wu said Lin would be able to leave prison before the Lunar New Year holiday, which begins on Jan. 22.
In 2006, Lin was accused of forgery and a breach of trust by prosecutors for secretly helping Far Eastern Group chairman Douglas Hsu (徐旭東) gain ownership of the Sogo department store chain.
He had initially promised former Sogo chairman Chang Chi-min (章啟明) that he would help the financially struggling chain secure capital.
Far Eastern Group injected capital into one of Sogo’s subsidiary companies, Pacific Distribution Investment, and then took control of most of Sogo’s shares, securing ownership of the company in 2004.
Hsu and Lee Heng-lung (李恆隆), the former Pacific Distribution Investment chairman, were both included in the indictment, but were later acquitted after the courts ruled that the two had engaged in normal business practices, However, Lin was found guilty.
Lin’s wife, Sophie Yeh (葉素菲), former Procomp Informatics Co chairwoman, is serving 14 years in prison for her role in defrauding a chipmaker she once headed of NT$7 billion (US$227 million).