Prosecutors yesterday sought to detain Mckinney Tsai (蔡友才) and Wang Chi-pang (王起梆), two former top executives at Mega Financial Holding Co (兆豐金控), after they accused both men of financial irregularities, breach of trust, forgery and other related offenses.
Tsai and Wang had been evasive and had attempted to shirk their responsibility on allegations of questionable loans of up to NT$20 billion (US$638 million) to Chien Chi Asset Management Co (鑒機資產管理) earlier this year, officials at the Taipei District Prosecutors’ Office said.
Tsai was chairman of both Mega Financial and of its flagship banking unit, Mega International Commercial Bank (兆豐銀行), and Wang was a former chief secretary of Mega Financial and an aide to Tsai.
Photo: Hsieh Chun-lin, Taipei Times
After resigning from Mega Financial in March, Tsai joined Chien Chi Asset Management, owned by Ruentex Group (潤泰集團) chairman Samuel Yin (尹衍樑).
Tsai and Wang have been accused of violating of the Securities and Exchange Act (證券交易法) and the Banking Act (銀行法).
Prosecutors found that within a month of Tsai becoming chairman of Mega Financial, Chien Chi Asset Management’s assets increased from NT$8 billion to NT$20 billion due to questionable loans from Mega Bank.
Prosecutors said they received conflicting accounts from Tsai and Wang, and that they suspected that the pair had forged documents to obtain the loans.
They said both men tried to shift responsibility onto the other when questioned about the transactions.
Tsai and Wang had already been listed as defendants in a money-laundering case related to Mega Bank’s New York branch.
Citing Tsai and Wang’s alleged involvement in financial irregularities, possible tampering with evidence, the likelihood of their collusion and the possibility they could flee the nation, prosecutors applied to have the two men detained incommunicado during an ongoing investigation into the case.
The bail hearing was still ongoing as of press time last night.
Tsai looked glum and did not respond to reporters’ questions when he arrived at the Taipei District Prosecutors’ Office for questioning on Monday night.
The office and the Criminal Investigation Bureau conducted raids at Chien Chi Asset Management and other locations on Monday, where they gathered documents and financial records, before summoning 18 people for questioning.
Aside from Tsai and Wang, those summoned for questioning included Yin and former Chien Chi Asset Management chairman Steve Hsieh (謝泓源).
Yin told reporters: “I am innocent,” and: “Based on all the facts, I have confidence,” when he was released by prosecutors yesterday morning following questioning.
Previously, prosecutors had carried out three rounds of raids at various locations and had summoned Tsai four times in the past two months as they investigated allegations of money laundering and financial irregularities at Mega Bank.
The Financial Supervisory Commission had been instructed by the government to conduct a probe into violations of the money-laundering rules by Mega Bank’s New York branch that incurred a US$180 million fine from the New York State Department of Financial Services in August.
Subsequently, the watchdog fined Mega Bank NT$10 million after finding evidence of suspicious bank accounts and questionable practices in 174 transactions between its New York and Panama branches.
The US Department of State yesterday criticized Beijing over its misrepresentation of the US’ “one China” policy in the latest diplomatic salvo between the two countries over a bid by Taiwan to regain its observer status at the World Health Assembly, the decisionmaking body of the WHO. “The PRC [People’s Republic of China] continues to publicly misrepresent U.S. policy,” Department of State spokesman Ned Price wrote on Twitter. “The United States does not subscribe to the PRC’s ‘one China principle’ — we remain committed to our longstanding, bipartisan one China policy, guided by the Taiwan Relations Act, Three Joint Communiques, and
FATES LINKED: The US president said that sanctions on Russia over Ukraine must exact a ‘long-term price,’ because otherwise ‘what signal does that send to China?’ US President Joe Biden yesterday vowed that US forces would defend Taiwan militarily in the event of a Chinese attack in his strongest statement to date on the issue. Beijing is already “flirting with danger,” Biden said following talks with Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida in Tokyo, in which the pair agreed to monitor Chinese naval activity and joint Chinese-Russian exercises. Asked if Washington was willing to get involved militarily to defend Taiwan, he replied: “Yes.” “That’s the commitment we made,” Biden said. “We agreed with the ‘one China’ policy, we signed on to it ... but the idea that it can be
INFORMATION LEAKED: Documents from Xinjiang purportedly showed top leaders in Beijing calling for a forceful crackdown and even orders to shoot to kill Chinese President Xi Jinping (習近平) yesterday held a videoconference with UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Michelle Bachelet as she visited Xinjiang during a mission overshadowed by fresh allegations of Uighur abuses and fears she is being used as a public relations tool. The Chinese Communist Party (CCP) has been accused of detaining more than 1 million Uighurs and other Muslim minorities in the region as part of a years-long crackdown the US and lawmakers in other Western nations have labeled a “genocide.” China denies the allegations. Bachelet was expected to visit the cities of Urumqi and Kashgar on a six-day tour. The US
SUBTLE? While Biden said the US policy of ‘strategic ambiguity’ on Taiwan had not changed, the group targeted China and Russia without naming them Leaders of Australia, India, Japan and the US yesterday warned against attempts to “change the status quo by force,” as concerns grow about whether China could invade Taiwan. The issue of Taiwan loomed over a leadership meeting in Tokyo of the Quadrilateral Security Dialogue (Quad) nations — the US, Japan, Australia and India — who stressed their determination to ensure a free and open Indo-Pacific region in the face of an increasingly assertive China, although Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida said the group was not targeting any one country. The four leaders said in a joint statement issued after their talks