Real-estate developer Radium Life Tech Co (日勝生) will be targeted if it refuses to turn over money owed to the city for the MeHAS City (美河市) project corruption case, Taipei Mayor Ko Wen-je (柯文哲) said in an interview late on Wednesday night.
“Be good and return the money owed to the city. If you resist, I will put aside [other corruption cases] to concentrate on yours,” Ko said in an interview with the talk show This Is It (關鍵時刻) on the Eastern Broadcasting Co (東森電視) channel.
Ko estimated that the firm short-changed the city by NT$7.6 billion (US$239.1 million) when the project was constructed.
Photo: Weng Yu-huang, Taipei Times
The MeHAS City project was constructed between 2007 and 2012 by Radium in conjunction with the Taipei City Department of Rapid Transit Systems (DORTS), encompassing 9.3 hectares of homes, offices and stores in New Taipei City’s Sindian District (新店), next to the Xiaobitan (小碧潭) MRT station.
Under charges filed by the Taipei District Prosecutors’ Office in 2013, former DORTS officials face accusations of forging the cost estimates used to apportion project profits to inflate Radium’s share, underestimating the city’s costs while overestimating Radium’s contribution. The project has also been subject to controversy for allegedly allowing land designated for the MRT station to be turned over to a private developer.
In response to Ko’s comments, Radium yesterday said that it had signed a legal contract with the city and was not responsible for the price estimates that were drafted by city itself. It added that the dispute had already entered arbitration under an agreement signed in 2013 and urged the mayor to not “prejudge” the case and respect the legal process, while asking for an opportunity for company representatives to meet with the mayor to explain the firm’s position.
In the interview, Ko brushed aside questions of whether he would be powerless to do anything if no problems were found with firm’s contract, saying he was sure new discoveries would be made if all related documents were rigorously examined.
Ko has promised to declassify all documentation related to the case for perusal by city councilors and the public.
TAIWAN PROTECTION MEASURE: US Army General Charles Flynn would not say where in the Asia-Pacific the missiles would be sent, but only that they would arrive in 2024 The US is to send medium-range missiles including the Standard Missile 6 (SM-6) and Tomahawk to the Asia-Pacific next year to deter a Chinese attack on Taiwan, US military news Web site Defense One reported. The report cited comments US Army General Charles Flynn made during the annual Halifax International Security Forum on Nov. 19. “We have tested them and we have a battery or two of them today,” Flynn was quoted as saying. “In 24. We intend to deploy that system in your region. I’m not going to say where and when. But I will just say that we will
UNUSUAL UPTICK: There are more flu-like illnesses in northern China than in the past 3 years, but data from Beijing showed that known pathogens are responsible Responding to an uptick in respiratory illnesses in China, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) yesterday said it has instructed international airport and port quarantine centers to raise their alert levels, and plans to issue an alert to healthcare practitioners. The number of flu-like illnesses reported in northern China has been increasing for five consecutive weeks, and is higher than the same period in the past three years, CDC Deputy Director-General Philip Lo (羅一鈞) said. “According to the WHO’s latest statement, issued yesterday, information provided by Chinese government showed that the illnesses were mainly reported among children, and the illnesses were attributed
LOYALTY: The 10 active and retired soldiers betrayed the nation and its people by leaking and passing on military secrets to China, the High Prosecutors’ Office said Ten former and current military officers were yesterday indicted on charges of spying for China, including two who allegedly filmed themselves pledging loyalty to Beijing. The High Prosecutors’ Office requested life imprisonment for the suspects in light of the severity of the crime. The 10 active-duty and retired officers included members of the 601st Brigade of the Aviation Special Forces comprising attack helicopter squadrons and elite combat units in charge of defending northern Taiwan, including Taipei. The other suspects came from Huadong Defense Command, in charge of defending the eastern coast; Kinmen Defense Command, in charge of defending Kinmen and Matsu; and one
THREE-WAY RACE: Hou You-yi said until the last minute he hoped to run with Ko Wen-je, but the latter did not pick up the phone when he called to make a final pitch The Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) and Taiwan People’s Party (TPP) registered their own candidates yesterday after a breakdown in coalition talks, while independent candidate Terry Gou (郭台銘) dropped out, setting up a three-way race for the presidential election in January. TPP Chairman Ko Wen-je (柯文哲) was the first to officially register his candidacy with the Central Election Commission in Taipei yesterday, shortly after naming TPP Legislator Cynthia Wu (吳欣盈) as his running mate. Wu, the daughter of former Shin Kong Financial Holding Co (新光金控) chairman Eugene Wu (吳東進), is a TPP legislator-at-large who was appointed in November last year and had served