《TAIPEI TIMES》 Court reverses Chao bail decision
Independent Legislator Chao Cheng-yu leaves the Taipei District Court to be transported to the Taipei Detention Center in New Taipei City’s Tucheng District yesterday. Photo: Wang Yi-sung, Taipei Times
By Jason Pan / Staff reporter
In a reversal of an earlier court decision, independent Legislator Chao Cheng-yu （趙正宇） was yesterday detained with restricted communications, becoming the fourth lawmaker to be detained for alleged involvement in a department store bribery case.
The three other lawmakers are Chinese Nationalist Party （KMT） legislators Chen Chao-ming （陳超明） and Sufin Siluko （廖國棟）, and Democratic Progressive Party （DPP） Legislator Su Chen-ching （蘇震清）.
Chao was released after posting bail of NT$1 million （US$33,882） on Sunday last week, but Taipei prosecutors applied again on Thursday to detain him.
The judge agreed with prosecutors after they provided evidence of Chao’s alleged involvement in the case and said that he could flee abroad to evade prosecution.
Chao was transported to the Taipei Detention Center in New Taipei City’s Tucheng District （土城） yesterday afternoon.
The four legislators, as well as two politicians who have been granted bail — former New Power Party chairman Hsu Yung-ming （徐永明） and former DPP legislator Mark Chen （陳唐山） — have been listed as suspects for allegedly contravening the Anti-Corruption Act （貪污治罪條例）, among other charges.
The court on Friday rejected prosecutors’ second request to detain Hsu.
During the investigation, Chao was implicated in a different bribery case, as a raid found NT$9.2 million in cash in a paper bag at his residence, allegedly from two mortuary companies.
Chao allegedly pressured the Construction and Planning Agency to rezone an area within Yangmingshan National Park so that it could be converted into a cemetery and used by mortuaries.
Chao’s office director Lin Chia-chi （林家騏） was detained with restricted communications on Sunday last week. Also held incommunicado were Su’s office director, Yu Hsueh-yang （余學洋）, and Sufin’s office director, Ting Fu-hua （丁復華）.
Former Pacific Distribution Investment Co （太平洋流通） chairman Lee Heng-lung （李恆隆） and Kuo Ke-ming （郭克銘）, a political lobbyist and general manager of Knowledge International Consultancy （是知管理顧問公司）, have also been detained on suspicion of giving the implicated politicians NT$160 million so that Lee could gain control of Pacific Sogo Department Store （太平洋崇光百貨）.
Lee has since 2002 been involved in litigation with Far Eastern Group （遠東集團） chairman Douglas Hsu （徐旭東） over the ownership of Pacific Sogo, with courts ruling in favor of both parties in separate verdicts.