A New Taipei City woman has been detained for allegedly colluding with a counterfeiting ring in China that forged Japanese yen, US dollars and Deutsche marks that could fool experts, the Coast Guard Administration (CGA) announced yesterday.
“This is the largest currency counterfeiting case we have cracked in recent years,” Investigation Branch head Ruan Wen-chieh (阮文杰) said.
The 67-year-old women, surnamed Chen (陳), was apprehended yesterday and is being charged with breaches of the Smuggling Penalty Act (懲治走私條例) and securities forging offenses.
A raid of Chen’s residence in New Taipei City’s Yingge District (鶯歌) last week uncovered billions in forged bills — ￥228 million (US$2.05 million), US$3 million and 4 billion Deutsche marks (US$2.3 billion).
The bust was the result of cooperation between Taiwan and Japan, Ruan said, adding that in 2017, Japanese authorities told their Taiwanese counterparts about a Taiwanese woman who had been smuggling counterfeit Japanese yen to Okinawa.
“Our agency formed a task force and has been monitoring the case for more than one-and-a-half years,” Ruan added.
“It is very rare to see such sophisticated forgery of Japanese yen bills, because of the difficulties involved. The Japanese mint uses very special materials to create the paper for their currency and they add unique coloring agents that give a slight yellowish tone to the bills,” he added.
Whenever counterfeit bills were discovered in Japan, they would send their experts to Taiwan to examine the forgeries, he said.
Chen in 2012 set up a company for the smuggling operation and took trips to China to meet with a forgery ring, and would smuggle counterfeit Japanese yen on her return flight to Taiwan, investigators said.
Chen reportedly had a sales catalogue made up for her customers and also sold the forged bills to intermediaries, who profited by selling the fake bills or spending them at stores, they said.
Investigators estimate that Chen smuggled about ￥500 million in counterfeit yen from China to Taiwan over the years, saying that she allegedly sold about half of the bills for 15 to 20 percent of their face value.
“We believe that some customers transferred the counterfeit bills to other countries in Asia, while the fake US bills and Deutsche marks were sold in Japan, as they can serve as collateral for private loans there,” Ruan said.
SCHEDULE: The delegation is due to meet with President Tsai Ing-wen this morning and witness the signing of an MOU on bilateral health cooperation in the afternoon US Secretary of Health and Human Services (HHS) Alex Azar yesterday arrived in Taipei aboard a US government plane at the head of a delegation that is the highest-level visit by a US official since Washington switched diplomatic recognition to China in 1979. Azar’s flight landed at Taipei International Airport (Songshan airport) at 4:48pm, nearly one hour earlier than scheduled, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs said. The apron where it landed is reserved for military aircraft, the Songshan Air Force Base Command said. The members of Azar’s delegation included HHS Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response Robert Kadlec, HHS Chief of Staff Brian
ALEX AZAR: The first visit by a head of the Department of Health and Human Services would strictly observe the CECC’s special regulations, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs said US Secretary of Health and Human Services (HHS) Alex Azar is to lead a delegation to Taiwan — the highest-level visit by a US Cabinet official since the two sides cut formal relations in 1979. The plan was announced yesterday morning by the US Department of Health and Human Services and confirmed by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA). Beijing has expressed its concerns to Washington, Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs spokesman Wang Wenbin (汪文斌) said later yesterday. Taiwan and the US only issued statements saying that the visit would happen “in the coming days.” MOFA said that due to security concerns, it would
‘CROSS-STRAIT CONSIDERATIONS’: Groups said that the Ministry of Education’s policies excluded Chinese and students should not be blocked over political issues The Taiwan International Student Movement yesterday said it would protest today outside the Ministry of Education in Taipei against a policy that excludes some Chinese students from returning to Taiwan amid the COVID-19 pandemic. Since June 17, the ministry has allowed foreign students from 19 “low risk” and “medium-low risk” countries and regions to enter Taiwan. On July 22, it announced that it was relaxing restrictions to include students from all countries and regions who are graduating this semester and on Wednesday it further expanded entry to students enrolled in degree programs. A letter sent by the ministry on Wednesday to universities did
The military last week sent “no small number” of Marine Corps officers to the Pratas Islands (Dongsha Island, 東沙群島) following reports of a Chinese People’s Liberation Army (PLA) drill targeting the islands scheduled for this month. In an interview with Hong Kong’s Bauhinia Magazine published on Saturday last week, PLA National Defense University professor Li Daguang (李大光) confirmed that the Chinese army was planning to stage a simulated invasion of the Pratas Islands in the South China Sea this month. The islands comprise three atolls, with Pratas Island, at 1.74km2, being the largest. They lie southwest of Taiwan proper in the South