Wed, May 22, 2019 - Page 2 News List

Taiwan Civil Government head facing more charges

PIPE DREAM:Roger Lin allegedly told 134 members that their ‘citizenship cards’ allowed them to reside in the US and receive free government healthcare

By Jason Pan  /  Staff reporter

Taiwan Civil Government secretary-general Roger Lin, front center, and his wife, Julian Lin, back center, arrive at the Taoyuan District Prosecutors’ Office on May 11 last year.

Photo: CNA

Taiwan Civil Government founder Roger Lin (林志昇) and his wife, Julian Lin (林梓安), were yesterday indicted on additional charges of aggravated fraud and profiting on false pretenses, after 134 more people filed complaints against the couple and other executives of the organization.

Taoyuan prosecutors said that they had uncovered more evidence and took additional testimony from victims, after six top executives, including the Lins, were in July last year indicted on charges relating to money laundering, fraud, operating a criminal organization and illegal fundraising.

The six executives faced charges for allegedly defrauding Taiwan Civil Government members of about NT$770 million (US$24.48 million) by having them pay for political donations, seminars, “citizenship” identification cards and high-level membership fees for nonexistent government positions, among other schemes.

Roger Lin led the group, which “operated like a political Ponzi scheme,” prosecutors said, estimating that he and other leaders had made more than NT$1 billion since the organization was founded in 2008.

Roger Lin, 68, and Julian Lin, 52, are the main defendants in both indictments.

Additional charges were also filed against four executives who allegedly worked closely with the Lins: Yu Hsiang-ching (游象敬), 79, who owns the organization’s headquarters in Taoyuan; chief accounting officer Yeh Pi-lien (葉碧蓮), 54; Hsu Yi-ming (許義明), 67, who was named “finance minister” of the Taiwan Civil Government; and Tsai Tsai-yuan (蔡財源), 78, who was named “prime minister.”

Most of the 134 people who registered complaints and gave testimony said that they support the Taiwanese independence movement and agreed with Lin’s ideas.

The alleged victims said that their losses ranged from a few thousand to several million New Taiwan dollars.

Members were told that the “citizenship cards” issued by Roger Lin were authorized by the “US military government” and entitled holders to travel to or reside in the US, prosecutors said.

Roger Lin also claimed that the cards entitled holders to a one-to-one exchange rate between the NT dollar and US dollar; housing, healthcare and pensions paid for by the US government; and free tuition to a US college for their children, prosecutors said.

Taoyuan authorities in May last year raided the headquarters and residences of group executives, where they seized NT$134.43 million, US$50,000 and 2,000 euros (US$2,230 at the current exchange rate) in cash and discovered other assets belonging to Roger Lin, including deeds to four plots of land and four buildings.

After being detained for five months pending trial, the six suspects were in October last year released on bail with restrictions.

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