The Taipei District Court on Wednesday sentenced Fanny Liu (劉樂妍), a former member of the now-disbanded female pop group Fantasy 4, to 10 years in prison for vote-buying.
The court found Liu — who is now based in China and has made pro-Chinese Communist Party remarks — guilty of reducing the rent on a Taipei property she owned in exchange for the tenant voting for a Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) candidate in the November 2018 nine-in-one local elections.
She can appeal the ruling.
Photo: Chien Li-chung, Taipei Times
Liu in December 2018 reportedly lowered the rent by NT$1,000 after the tenant said they had voted for Taipei City Councilor Lo Chih-chiang (羅智強), prosecutors said.
Liu was to appear in court last year, but did not show up, citing her busy work schedule in China, prosecutors said, adding that they first learned of the vote-buying when Liu posted about it on Facebook.
“What I’m doing here is not vote-buying, but rather it is intervening in the elections with Chinese capital,” she wrote.
A Taiwanese Facebook user saw the post and passed a screenshot of it to the Taipei District Prosecutors’ Office.
After an investigation confirmed the payment, prosecutors charged Liu with vote-buying.
During questioning, Liu reportedly admitted to vote-buying, saying she had asked the tenant to vote for Lo, as she knew that their household registration listed them with an address in Taipei’s sixth electoral district, where Lo was running for councilor, prosecutors said.
Liu said the NT$1,000 was to cover the cost of taxi fare to the polling station, they added.
Prosecutors also questioned the tenant, who said that Liu always discussed politics with them, but that they “did not want to listen to it.”
The tenant reportedly told Liu that they had voted when they had not, prosecutors said, adding that they checked election records and confirmed that the tenant had not voted.
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