TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — The authorities have seized the property of a Keelung woman for an overdue COVID fine and plan to auction it off if the arrears are not paid.
Keelung police nabbed the woman, surnamed Lee (李), and four other people for gathering to play mahjong at an indoor space on June 5, when the Level 3 COVID-19 alert was still in effect, CNA reported. Lee was slapped with a NT$60,000 (US$2,069) fine by the city's health bureau for violating the Communicable Disease Control Act.
However, as she failed to pay the fine before its deadline, her case was referred to the Administrative Enforcement Agency’s (AEA) Yilan branch. The branch said that upon taking up the case, they immediately got hold of data on Lee's real estate properties, promptly issued orders of seizure, and called on her to pay on several occasions.
According to the AEA branch, staffers paid visits to the woman's residence, but she was not present, per CNA. The AEA also found that in addition to the NT$60,000 fine, she had an outstanding traffic violation fine of NT$186,000 for refusing to take a sobriety test.
The Yilan branch has seized 13 plots of land Lee owns in New Taipei’s Ruifang District and dispatched staffers to post an enforcement notice on the door of her residence. If Lee continues to ignore the notice, the branch said it would not exclude the possibility of auctioning off her property to pay for the fines.
Lee told CNA on Wednesday that when AEA staffers came to her home on Sept. 10, she was out getting a COVID shot and staying at a friend’s home overnight.
When she got home the next day, she said the notice was on the door. She explained that she has contacted the Yilan branch and will discuss payment with them.
Lee added that she was unsure about the traffic violation, despite the ticket being in her name. She said her scooter had been used by her son but that she would pay the fine regardless.