The Taipei District Prosecutors’ Office yesterday indicted Jinan University Taiwanese Alumni Association secretary-general Fu Wen-chi (傅文齊) and chief executive Lee Wan-ping (李宛平) on charges of colluding with Chinese officials and building an illegal organization for China’s use.
Fu and Lee are charged under the National Security Act (國家安全法) and the Act Governing Relations Between the People of the Taiwan Area and the Mainland Area (臺灣地區與大陸地區人民關係條例), the indictment read.
Fu and Lee tried to recruit into their organization “three or four army officers, both active and retired, lawmakers and legislative staffers,” without naming or disclosing the purpose of the organization, it said.
If the allegations are true, Fu’s and Lee’s activities showed how Chinese officials leveraged academic exchanges with Taiwan to gain intelligence and influence.
Fu attended Jinan University in Guangzhou in China’s Guangdong Province and became acquainted with several officials at China’s Taiwan Affairs Office (TAO), prosecutors said.
He rose in the alumni organization in Taiwan to become its secretary-general and recruited Lee to be its chief executive, they said.
From 2009 to 2016, Fu and Lee attempted to develop an illicit organization in Taiwan, after receiving instructions from a TAO official known as “Xiao Wu” (小吳), prosecutors said.
Through Lee’s connections, Fu cultivated contacts with targets of recruitment and arranged overseas trips for them in China, Hong Kong, South Korea and Thailand, where they met Chinese officials in circumstances that were designed to appear coincidental, prosecutors said.
Fu and Lee collaborated with Chung Yi-min (鍾怡敏), an official at the unlicensed Christian Chung-Deh College (基督崇德學院), to illegally facilitate Taiwanese students’ enrollment in Chinese schools, including Jinan University, they said.
Chung allegedly forged credentials and diplomas for unqualified applicants as part of the services thatthe three provided to their clientele, which included several lawmakers, legislative aides and businesspeople that the prosecution described as “prominent.”
The charges against Chung — forgery and breaching the Act Governing Relations Between the People of the Taiwan Area and the Mainland Area — would be deferred if he pays NT$120,000 to the government, the indictment said.
The Investigation Bureau investigated the subjects for several years using different methods, including wiretapping, the indictment said, adding that the officers, lawmakers and staffers involved in the case all stated under oath that they had not colluded with Chinese officials.
Since there is no evidence that any of the people targeted by Fu and Lee have leaked or tried to give away state secrets, the pair have only been charged with attempting “to develop an organization for the official use of a foreign country or Mainland China” under Article 2-1 of the National Security Act, prosecutors said.
Lee Liang-heng (李亮恆), a former legislative aide to then-Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) legislator Liao Wan-ju (廖婉汝), was involved in collecting intelligence for China on the US-Taiwan Defense Industry Conference and Taiwan’s national defense and foreign affairs ministries, prosecutors said.
However, as none of the information that Lee Liang-heng gathered was classified, the prosecution decided against indicting him.
SPEEDING ELETRIC VEHICLES: Available without license requirements, the low-cost vehicles, especially if illicitly modified, can often reach a dangerous speed The government should crack down on illegal electric bicycles and scooters, the non-profit Consumers’ Foundation said on Friday, citing research on the potentially dangerous speed of the vehicles. Electric bicycles and lightweight electric scooters have gained popularity as they do not require registration and riders do not need licenses, the foundation said, adding that as many as 40 percent of them can reach speeds exceeding the legal limit of 25kph for non-licensed two-wheelers. Some consumers also purchased legal electric vehicles and modified them to reach higher speeds, it said. “If the government does not step up efforts to confiscate these
DIPLOMATIC MOVES: Beijing is reportedly pressing the state after reports of forming links with Taiwan, while the ministry is also planning to reopen its office in Guam soon A representative office is set to open in Somaliland at the end of this month, at the earliest, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA) said yesterday amid reports that Beijing is sending a diplomatic delegation to the east African country. The ministry on July 1 announced that Taiwan and Somaliland would establish representative offices, following a report by the Somaliland Chronicle Web site. It said at the time that the two nations did not plan to establish formal ties. Somaliland President Muse Bihi Abdi has instructed close confidants to explore the possibility of “mutual recognition between Taiwan and Somaliland,” the Somaliland Chronicle reported
A Belgian man who tested positive for COVID-19 in Taiwan last week is likely to have contracted the disease in Taipei in late June, National Taiwan University (NTU) College of Public Health vice dean Tony Chen (陳秀熙) said yesterday. The Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC) on Saturday reported that the man, who is in his 20s, came to Taiwan for work on May 3 and tested positive on Wednesday last week as he was about to depart. The man in March reported loss of taste and smell, the center said, adding that he worked in Changhua County, but visited Taipei several times,
NEW CASE REPORTED: A man who returned from South Africa on a flight with the nation’s 460th and 461st cases has now tested positive for the disease The Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC) yesterday said that there is no need to test all arrivals to the nation for COVID-19, a policy the Executive Yuan supports. The center reported one new imported case, bringing the nation’s tally of confirmed cases to 477. The new case is a Taiwanese man in his 60s who on July 25 returned from South Africa, said Centers for Disease Control (CDC) Deputy Director-General Chuang Jen-hsiang (莊人祥), who is also the CECC’s spokesman. The man had returned to Taiwan on the same flight as cases Nos. 460 and 461, reported on July 27, Chuang said. On July 24,