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Taiwan prosecutors indict Hsinchu mayor over corruption charges

Kao Hung-an accused of appropriating wages of her assistants during stint as legislator

Hsinchu Mayor Kao Hung-an (center). (Hsinchu City Government, CNA photo)

Hsinchu Mayor Kao Hung-an (center). (Hsinchu City Government, CNA photo)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — Hsinchu Mayor Kao Hung-an (高虹安) of the Taiwan People’s Party (TPP) was indicted Monday (Aug. 14) on corruption and forgery charges, which could cost her job if convicted.

The Taipei District Prosecutors Office is pressing charges against Kao for colluding with her assistants during her stint as a legislator between 2020-2022 to commit wage fraud. She allegedly earned NT$460,000 (US$14,390) in ill-gotten profit, per Taiwan News.

Kao and several defendants were accused of abusing their legal authority to gain profit and forgery, in violation of the Anti-Corruption Act (貪污治罪條例) and the Criminal Code (刑法), an eight-month investigation has found.

Lee Chung-ting (李忠庭), Kao’s reported boyfriend and one of her aides, was named a defendant in the case but will not be prosecuted due to a lack of evidence, the prosecutors said. Also, charges against her for breach of trust in a patent application case will be dropped because of insufficient evidence.

Kao will be suspended if found guilty in the first trial and removed from her post if convicted, CNA quoted a civil affairs official as saying.

A former board member of Foxconn founder Terry Gou's (郭台銘) Culture and Education Foundation, Kao was elected in 2022 despite allegations of fraud. She also stirred controversy over her comments on thesis plagiarism last year and, more recently, about an anti-fraud campaign that raised questions about copyright infringement.