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SID questions presidential official in Ting Hsin case

Top prosecutor does not exclude questioning President Ma

SID questions presidential official in Ting Hsin case

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) – Prosecutors summoned the manager of President Ma Ying-jeou’s office to face questioning about the allegations of off-the-book payments by Ting Hsin International, reports said Wednesday, while the top prosecutor did not exclude summoning the president himself if the need arose.
After talk show host Clara Chou alleged that the company, embroiled in numerous food safety scandals, paid NT$200 million (US$6.3 million) to Ma’s campaigns, the Supreme Prosecutors Office Special Investigation Division began to look into the allegations, even though the president vehemently denied them.
His office’s manager, Kang Ping-cheng, reportedly spent more than an hour answering questions from prosecutors Wednesday afternoon, but he failed to talk to reporters waiting outside.
Prosecutor-General Yen Da-ho told reporters later that if it was necessary for the investigation, Ma himself could also be questioned by prosecutors. Yen himself was once part of a team which visited the Presidential Office to talk to then-President Chen Shui-bian.
Earlier in the day, several prominent businessmen visited prosecutors, reportedly to face questioning about alleged fund-raising dinners for Ma.
The highest-profile business leader was Taiwan Lottery Co. Chairman Steve Hsueh, a former secretary general of the Cabinet. He spent about an hour inside, reports said.
New Micropore Inc. ex-Chairman Donald Wang and Helm Technology Co., Ltd. Chairman Ni Chi-hsi also arrived at the prosecutors’ office during the morning, but Wang told reporters that if he had been summoned to talk about the alleged Ting Hsin political donations, it would have been a misunderstanding. He left after 40 minutes and told journalists they had to ask the SID if they wanted answers to their questions.
According to media reports, the main topics of discussion might have been an alleged dinner in 2007, when Ma’s Kuomintang was still in opposition, where top business people from the high-tech sector discussed raising NT$200 million for his 2008 presidential campaign. The event was reportedly hosted by former United Microelectronics Corporation Vice Chairman John Hsuan, according to allegations from a talk show guest.
Several politicians and business leaders, including Hsuan, have been questioned by the SID in the case, but President Ma says the allegations of political donations are completely false.


Updated : 2021-09-19 20:16 GMT+08:00