Wed, May 16, 2012 - Page 2 News List

Businessman accused of agreeing to spy for China

Staff writer, with CNA

The Taipei District Prosecutors’ Office indicted a Taiwanese businessman who works in China yesterday for his alleged involvement in a Chinese espionage attempt.

The suspect, Cheng Min-chun (鄭敏群), allegedly served as the middleman between Chinese intelligence and one of his former classmates, surnamed Tung (董), who is a military official, according to prosecutors. They did not disclose Tung’s full name due to the sensitive nature of the case.

The prosecutors were informed by military authorities that Cheng had asked to meet Tung several times last year and he proposed that Tung meet with people from China in a Southeast Asian country in exchange for cash. Tung refused the proposal and reported the case to his superiors, the prosecutors said.

Investigation Bureau officials searched Cheng’s office and home in Greater Tainan on April 18 and interrogated him and his Chinese wife, surnamed Pan (潘), the same day. He was then detained on grounds of being a flight risk.

Thanks to a referral from Tung, Cheng served as an assistant at Taiwan’s Military Intelligence Bureau in 2003, according to the prosecutors. He left that post and married Pan in China in July last year. While there, he was contacted by Chinese intelligence officers who asked to meet with Tung, prosecutors alleged.

They also said Cheng accepted between US$1,500 and US$3,000 from Chinese intelligence for relaying their messages to Tung.

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