Taiwan charges Chinese student with using New Party spokesman

Zhou appealing separate 14-month prison sentence

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Zhou Hongxu (left) at a previous court appearance.

Zhou Hongxu (left) at a previous court appearance. (By Central News Agency)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) – Prosecutors on Tuesday charged a Chinese student who is appealing against a 14-month prison sentence with using New Party spokesman Wang Ping-chung (王炳忠) to develop a spy ring in Taiwan.

The indictments followed the high-profile search of the homes of Wang and three other leading New Party members on December 19.

Last September, Zhou Hongxu (周泓旭), who had studied in Taiwan earlier, was sentenced to one year and two months in prison for trying to bribe a Taiwanese diplomat into spying for China. He is currently appealing the sentence at the Taiwan High Court.

Zhou had also used Wang and two other New Party officials to set up a news website and an association which had to function as a basis for setting up a new spy ring to use during peace and war time, prosecutors said Tuesday.

The action was subject to a new indictment under the National Security Act to be handled by the Taiwan High Court, while any accusations against the New Party members were still being investigated by the Taipei District Prosecutors Office, the Apple Daily reported.

Explaining last month’s search, prosecutors said they suspected Zhou might have hidden evidence at the homes of the New Party officials, leading them to obtain search warrants and list them as witnesses.

Earlier, prosecutors had shown the warrants to media in order to prove the searches had been conducted completely in accordance with the documents.