Wed, Feb 20, 2013 - Page 3 News List

Former legislator begins prison term for graft

By Rich Chang  /  Staff reporter

Former Non-Partisan Solidarity Union legislator Yen Ching-piao, front center, holds a press conference in Greater Taichung yesterday before starting a prison sentence for graft.

Photo: CNA

Former Non-Partisan Solidarity Union legislator Yen Ching-piao (顏清標) yesterday reported to Greater Taichung prosecutors to begin his prison term for graft.

The Ministry of Justice said Yeh must serve a prison term of two years and 10 months, with the possibility of release on parole after one year and four months.

Yeh, who was sentenced to seven years in prison on various charges, criticized the ministry during a press conference in the morning, saying he was being jailed without knowing how much time he would serve.

“The law is very strict on me. I will serve the time that I must serve, but I will not serve any single day that I should not serve,” Yen said.

Yen said he completed a prison term of three years and nine months in 2009 for illegal possession of firearms and making threats, among other charges. He said that according to the law, he was eligible for parole after completing more than half of the combined seven-year prison term.

Yen and his attorneys insist the ministry should determine the duration of his term first.

The ministry said the duration of Yen’s sentence would be decided by Yen’s conduct in prison, adding that the ministry currently could not give him a precise date for his release.

The Supreme Court in November last year found Yen and Greater Taichung Council Speaker Chang Ching-tang (張清堂), an independent, guilty of misusing council funds between 1998 and 2000.

It said they spent more than NT$20 million (US$686,600) of the council’s budget at hostess bars and KTV lounges in then-Taichung City, and upheld a sentence of three years and six months.

Yen’s title as a lawmaker was revoked after the ruling.

Representing the Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT), Yen’s son, 36-year-old Yen Kuan-hen (顏寬恆), won a legislative by-election in Greater Taichung’s second district on Jan. 26 against the Democratic Progressive Party’s Chen Shi-kai (陳世凱) by a small margin.

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