The office of former Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) chairperson Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) denied a media report saying that a fugitive had spent NT$50 million (US$1.7 million) to aid her campaign in the January presidential election.
The Chinese-language China Times Weekly magazine reported this week that former president Chen Shui-bian’s (陳水扁) family physician Huang Fang-yen (黃芳彥), who lives in California, mobilized and compensated overseas Taiwanese to return and vote for Tsai in the Jan. 14 election.
Huang is accused of playing a role in the cases of corruption for which Chen is serving a 17-and-a-half-year sentence, and has been on the nation’s wanted list after fleeing to the US in late 2009.
In a statement issued late on Friday, Tsai’s office denied accepting Huang’s financial aid during her campaign and said it regretted that it had not been contacted by the magazine for comment.
The office set a three-day deadline for the magazine to apologize for its false report before it files a lawsuit against the publication.
The office is considering legal action because the magazine repeatedly published stories maligning Tsai using unverified information, it said in a press release.
It could also take those media outlets that published or cited the China Times Weekly report to court, the office said.
Tsai set up the office after losing the election to President Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九) by nearly 800,000 votes, or about 6 percent.