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Taiwan ex-fire chief wired millions overseas: Brother

Taiwan ex-fire chief wired millions overseas: Brother

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) – Former National Fire Agency chief Huang Chi-min wired millions of funds overseas, his brother reportedly told the Taipei District Court Tuesday.
Huang was arrested last year in an investigation into kickbacks surrounding a contract for disaster prevention systems. Prosecutors want him to serve a life sentence for corruption, but he has insisted he is innocent. He gained national fame for his hard work during the relief effort after Typhoon Morakot in August 2009.
At a court hearing, his brother, Huang Wen-chou, said the former government official often visited him carrying NT$2 million (US$69,000) to NT$3 million (US$103,000) in cash, asking him to wire it into an account in Singapore. Huang Chi-min had also opened a private bank account his wife knew nothing about, his brother told the court.
Huang Wen-chou said that the former fire chief worked out a formula for dividing the spoils from the contract, pocketing 40 percent for himself and giving 20 percent each to Huang Wen-chou and to businessmen Wang Ching-wu and Lu Chung-kuang. The same proportion was also used for sharing in the revenue from later illegal deals, reports said.
The younger brother said that they had a plan to wire NT$18 million (US$620,000) in illegal profits from the deals to the former fire chief once he retired.
Huang Chi-min was detained on August 29 on suspicion of having pocketed more than NT$19.24 million (US$662,000) in bribes from firefighting equipment suppliers involved in nine contracts. During searches of his homes and offices, investigators found at least 18 gold bars valued at more than NT$1.5 million (US$51,000) each, reports said.
Prosecutors indicted a total of 11 people in the case on December 25 and also put Huang’s son on the wanted list after he failed to appear for questioning about money laundering overseas.
The scandal surrounding Huang is but one in a long line of corruption allegations leveled at government officials over the past year. Former Cabinet Secretary-General Lin Yi-shih, former Nantou County Magistrate Lee Chao-ching and a brother of Changhua County Magistrate Cho Po-yuan are all facing trial over corruption scandals.


Updated : 2021-07-24 19:37 GMT+08:00