Some 20 to 30 Taiwanese businessmen based in China's Kuangtung province have reportedly been arrested in a crackdown against smugglers and tax evaders.
All reportedly operate in Tungkuan (
Reports from Tungkuan said that some of those arrested were turned in by employees who had alleged that their bosses failed to pay taxes or sold products without proper authorization.
The businessmen who have been taken into custody include several high-ranking members of Taiwanese-listed companies. A few of the arrests have already resulted in three-year prison terms, reports said.
Hsieh Ching-hsiung (謝慶雄), vice chairman of the Tungkuan Taiwan businessmen association, said the exact number arrested isn't clear. He said a meeting would be held today to discuss the problem.
China intensified efforts to overhaul its customs system last year, in the process cracking down on smuggling and rooting out tax evasion and corruption.
In August, six businessmen were arrested by customs authorities for selling products domestically without proper authorization. Several high-ranking members of Taiwanese listed companies were questioned about their involvement in such activity at the time.
Yu Feng-chih (
Yu added that most of the Taiwanese under arrest were detained for selling processed goods without proper authorization and were charged with smuggling and tax evasion.
In China, Taiwanese businessmen are permitted to manufacture certain products -- but the finished goods must be exported to overseas markets and cannot be sold domestically.
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