Chiayi County Commissioner Helen Chang (張花冠) of the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) was released on NT$1 million (US$33,300) bail by Kaohsiung prosecutors late on Friday night, following 12 hours of questioning on suspicion of being involved in an alleged corruption case.
Chang’s younger sister, Chang Ying-chi (張瑛姬), a deputy secretary-general of the county’s trade and investment promotion association — a non-profit organization partly funded by the county government — has been detained for two months since August, and the court has extended her detention for another two months.
Kaohsiung prosecutor Huang Tsai-hsiu (黃彩秀) said Helen Chang, who was listed as a defendant on Friday, has denied any involvement in corruption.
Prosecutors suspected the county government conducted over 30 irregular public bids, which cost the county more than NT$100 million.
Prosecutors said suspects may have violated corruption laws and the Government Procurement Act (政府採購法).
National Open University’s professor Wu Ming-ching (吳銘圳), Kaohsiung First University of Science and Technology professor Lin Jui-min (林銳敏) and Chiu Feng-ming (邱豐銘) — an official at the county government’s department of overall planning — were released on bail last week after being detained by Kaohsiung judges for two months since early August.
Prosecutors also listed National Sun Yat-sen University professor Lou Jie-chiung (樓基中), National Pintung University of Science and Technology professor Chang Kuo-ching (張國慶) and a businessman, Yeh Ya-chiang (葉雅強) as suspects in the case.
According to prosecutors, Chang Ying-chi and Chiu were detained on suspicion of taking bribes while in office and leaking confidential information, while the professors were suspected of having taken bribes from businesses while not maintaining neutral positions as members of an evaluation process.