Lien Hui-hsin out on NT$2.5m bail

DEFENSE::Her father’s spokesperson defended her role at a firm that made dodgy weight-loss pills, adding that Lien Chan has been using the product for five years

By Chris Wang  /  Staff reporter

Fri, Nov 01, 2013 - Page 4

Lien Hui-hsin (連惠心), daughter of former vice president Lien Chan (連戰), was released on bail of NT$2.5 million (US$85,000) early yesterday morning after four hours of questioning at the Taipei Prosecutors’ Office about her role in a case involving her investment in a nutritional supplement company whose weight-loss pills were found to contain unauthorized drugs.

Lien Hui-hsin, who reported to the prosecutors’ office as a defendant at 7pm on Wednesday, did not answer media inquiries when she left the office at around 12:30am yesterday. Her lawyer Fang Wen-shuan (方文萱) said that Lien Hui-hsin was not aware of any wrongdoing by the company.

Previously listed as a witness in the case, Lien told prosecutors that she had invested NT$15 million in Geneherbs Biotechnology Co, whose weight-loss product Wellslim Plus+ was confirmed to contain the banned substance cetilistat, a lipase inhibitor designed to treat obesity.

However, she said she was not responsible for company operations as an executive, nor did she know about the use of illegal substances in the products.

She is facing a sentence of up to two years for violation of the Pharmaceutical Affairs Act (藥事法) for the use of cetilistat in Geneherb’s products if her role as an executive in the company is confirmed.

The prosecutors’ office detained two defendants in the case — Huang Chen-kang (黃振康), chairman of Wellcare Pharmaceutical Co, the manufacturer of Wellslim Plus+, and Wellcare research and development director Yeh Mei-keng (葉枚耕).

Huang and Yeh were released on bail after a Taipei District Court hearing yesterday morning.

Lien Chan spokesperson Ting Yuan-chao (丁遠超) on Wednesday night questioned the Taipei Prosecutors’ Office’s insistence on subpoenaing Lien Hui-hsin at night, citing her role as a mother of three daughters.

Ting defended Lien Hui-hsin’s innocence, saying that she is merely an investor, not a manager, adding that Lien Chan has been a consumer of the product for five years.