The Nantou District Court yesterday decided to extend the detention of former Nantou County commissioner Lee Chao-ching (李朝卿), who was allegedly involved in corruption, by two months.
The extension starts tomorrow. Lee will be barred from communicating with others while he is in detention, because since he is a suspect in the case, he might destroy evidence or collude with others if he is able to communicate with them, the court said in its ruling.
Lee’s attorneys told reporters outside the courthouse that they would appeal the ruling with the Taiwan High Court’s Taichung branch and seek to have Lee released before the Lunar New Year holiday next month.
Prosecutors suspect that Lee and his county government received kickbacks from contractors who won bids for public projects to repair roads damaged by typhoons and floods.
Almost NT$10 million (US$343,800) in dirty money was identified in 10 different projects, prosecutors said.
On Nov. 29 last year, prosecutors searched Lee’s office and several other locations and seized NT$300,000 in cash found in tea cans in Lee’s office, more than NT$1 million in cash from the house of Nantou County Government’s public works department director Huang Jung-te (黃榮德) and NT$2.4 million in cash from the residence of Wu Chung-chi (吳仲琪), a contractor.
On Nov. 30, Lee was detained on charges of corruption and violating the Government Procurement Act (政府採購法), and the Ministry of the Interior suspended him from his job.
He has denied any involvement in corruption.