The New Taipei District Court on Thursday found Toucheng Township Mayor Tsao Qian-shun (曹乾舜) guilty of corruption, sentencing him to six years and six months in jail, and revoking his civil rights for four years.
Tsao, a member of the Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT), was convicted on three counts of contravening provisions of the Anti-Corruption Act (貪污治罪條例).
Tsao is in his second term as mayor of the Yilan County township, after he was first elected in 2014 and re-elected in 2018.
Tsao was placed in judicial detention after prosecutors found evidence of corruption following a probe launched in November 2019.
The court convicted Tsao of receiving NT$3 million (US$108,342) in bribes from contractors regarding a street lighting project in Toucheng.
The court also convicted Tsao of receiving bribes of NT$900,000 from a man surnamed Lin (林), for which Tsao in return promised to help Lin’s son and daughter find employment in the township’s sanitation department, and secure a teacher’s job for another daughter at a kindergarten operated by the township.
The Yilan County Government on Thursday said that Tsao is to be dismissed from his mayoral position after it officially receives the ruling.
Another Taiwanese politician facing corruption-related legal difficulties is Tainan City Council Deputy Speaker Lin Ping-lin (林炳利), who is being investigated by prosecutors.
Following a bail hearing at the Tainan District Court, Lin’s wife was placed in judicial detention on Thursday, while Lin received clemency as he is in hospital for cancer treatment.
Prosecutors said that Lin, who is not a member of a political party, along with his wife, daughter and a nephew, had received NT$18.6 million from government payrolls from December 2010 to November last year by listing family members and relatives as office assistants, although they allegedly did not hold such jobs.
In another case, prosecutors on Dec. 16 conducted a sweep of Taichung Prison over allegations that former KMT member and former Tainan County Council deputy speaker Wu Chien-pao (吳健保), currently serving a sentence for fraud, allegedly operated illegal gambling pools that bet on professional Taiwanese baseball games.
A Taichung Prison officer surnamed Kao (高) was on Thursday questioned and released on NT$100,000 bail on allegations that he received bribes from Wu’s family to grant Wu unauthorized prison privileges, including unlimited phone use and special meal deliveries.
Wu was sentenced to 10 years in a second ruling by the High Court in 2014, but fled to the Philippines in September 2014. He was found by Philippine authorities at a mansion in Subic Bay in January 2019 and extradited to Taiwan.
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