The Ill-gotten Party Assets Settlement Committee yesterday moved to nationalize 61 properties worth about NT$1.39 billion (US$46.5 million), saying that the China Youth Corps had unlawfully obtained them in the Martial Law era.
The corps must also pay an estimated NT$240.57 million in compensation on properties that had been sold to a third party and could not be returned to their rightful owners, committee Chairman Lin Feng-jeng (林?正) told a news conference in Taipei.
The properties being nationalized included 2,842m2 of land and structures with 19,615m2 of floor space, Lin said.
Photo: Tsai Tsung-hsien, Taipei Times
The assets the committee are to seize encompass guesthouses servicing national parks throughout Taiwan branded “youth activity centers,” including those at Sun Moon Lake (日月潭), Alishan (阿里山) and Kenting (墾丁).
They also include Kuan Yun Youth Hostel in Taroko National Park and other youth hostels branded “life-long learning centers” and “academies” in Chiayi and Taitung counties, the committee said.
The seizure orders were to be delivered to the corps by the end of yesterday and the properties must be either handed to the state within 30 days or foreclosed, he said.
The regulations governing public land might allow the hostels to remain open, but the matter is up to officials administrating public land, he said.
The corps during the Martial Law era was seen as a harmless group overseeing student recreational activities, but it was secretly conducting surveillance on university campuses nationwide, committee Deputy Chairman Sun Pin (孫斌) said.
Spying extended to students studying overseas via the corps’ international offices, he said.
The corps’ job was to indoctrinate young people through their participation in the organization’s activities, recruit new blood for the Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) and act as an antidote to student protests, he said.
Corps secretariat director Cheng Fei-wen (鄭斐文) criticized the committee, saying it had reneged on a deal they had struck and that the seizures would jeopardize the livelihoods of hostel employees.
The corps would fight the committee’s decision in court, he said.
“We negotiated with the committee eight times honestly and in good faith,” Cheng said. “It felt like a betrayal when the committee suddenly called a news conference to seize [the corps’] assets.”
The corps would hold a news conference after reviewing the committee’s legal documents, he said.
Additional reporting by CNA
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