Alleged Chinese spymaster's luxury towers in Taipei suspected to be 'bases'

Prosecutors believe alleged Chinese spymaster's luxury towers in Taipei are 'bases' for espionage in Taiwan

"Xiang Xin's" luxury apartment blocks. (Google images)

"Xiang Xin's" luxury apartment blocks. (Google images)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — Prosecutors have discovered that a suspected spymaster and his wife have spent hundreds of millions of Taiwan dollars purchasing two luxury apartment towers, which investigators suspect were used as a "bases" for their espionage operations.

Citing a source in the Prosector's Office, TVBS reported that China Innovation Investment Ltd. (CIIL, 中國創新投資) CEO and alleged spymaster Xiang Xin (向心) and his wife, alternate board member Kung Ching (龔青), purchased two apartment towers in Taipei's Xinyi District three years ago, but never moved in. Investigators now believe the couple used the luxury towers as "bases for development in Taiwan."

Prosecutors determined the couple spent hundreds of millions of Taiwan dollars to purchase two luxury apartment buildings. The building in Taipei's Xinyi District is 12 years old and has 122 units, each covering about 90 ping (a ping equals 3.3 square meters), with the highest selling rate per ping being NT$1.68 million, according to the report.

Xiang Xin flanked by reporters (CNA photo)

The couple is said to have rarely lived in the buildings and instead chose to rent them out. In addition, the properties were not listed in their name, but rather a third person.

After being released on bail on Sunday night (Nov. 25), the couple was seen checking into the Grand Hyatt Hotel. When prosecutors seized their phones, they found that they had used virtually no apps to communicate.

Prosecutors also found that Xiang Xin is actually a pseudonym and that his real name is Xiang Nianxin (向念心). He denied that he was a spy and claimed that he had never met self-proclaimed Chinese spy Wang "William" Liqiang (王立強).

Xiang Xin (left) is accompanied by a lawyer (CNA photo)

However, when prosecutors showed Xiang a photo of him and his wife posing with Wang, Xiang was unable to provide an explanation, reported TVBS.

Xiang Xin and Kung Qing are mobbed by reporters (CNA photo)