Thailand detains Taiwan man over alleged China broadcasts

Businessman helped radio volunteer rent a space in Chiang Mai

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Thai police detained a Taiwanese man allegedly linked to underground radio broadcasts aimed at China (photo from The Sound of Hope).

Thai police detained a Taiwanese man allegedly linked to underground radio broadcasts aimed at China (photo from The Sound of Hope). (CNA photo)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) - A Taiwanese businessman was detained in Thailand for allegedly helping an underground radio broadcast at China, Radio Free Asia (RFA) reported Friday.

The manager of the online radio station said Chiang Yung-hsin (蔣永新) had nothing to do with illegal broadcasts, the Central News Agency said.

Police in Bangkok detained Chiang, who manages a Taiwanese factory in Thailand, on November 22 over allegations of illegal radio broadcasting.

The Falun Gong station 'The Sound of Hope' is based in San Francisco but has been making short-wave Chinese-language programs aimed at China for a decade, according to CNA. A station official told RFA that Chiang wasn’t even a volunteer, but that he had helped a volunteer rent a space in the northern Thai city of Chiang Mai which could be used for broadcasting equipment.

The Taiwanese man has since reportedly been freed on bail, but he has not been allowed to leave Thailand.

The radio station said most of its programming was devoted to international news and cultural issues, and not to religion, while it had respected Thai legislation. Pressure from China had reportedly moved Thai police to act against Chiang.