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Man detained on suspicion of colluding with China in 2022 elections

12/30/2023 09:36 PM
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New Taipei City councilors meeting during a council sitting to review the city goverbment's finance on Jan. 11, 2023. CNA file photo
New Taipei City councilors meeting during a council sitting to review the city goverbment's finance on Jan. 11, 2023. CNA file photo

Taipei, Dec. 30 (CNA) A man has been detained for allegedly financing a pro-unification New Taipei City Council candidate in Taiwan's local elections held late last year on the instructions of Beijing, the New Taipei District Prosecutors Office said Saturday.

The man, surnamed Sun (孫), allegedly wired US$13,000 from Hong Kong in September 2022 to support Wang Cheng (王正), who represented the Labor Party in the election two months later, prosecutors said in a statement.

The money was used by Wang to purchase promotional materials for his campaign, including face masks, tissues and banners, according to prosecutors, who said they looked into the case "after receiving intelligence."

It did not elaborate on when it received the information or what precipitated the investigation, which comes just two weeks before Taiwan's presidential election.

After a search Friday, prosecutors questioned five more people related to the case and filed a motion with the New Taipei District Court to detain Sun, vice chairman of a youth development association, and a Chinese woman surnamed Da (笪), on suspicion of violating the Anti-Infiltration Act.

Da, a director of the Federation of Hong Kong Jiangsu Youth who allegedly colluded with Sun to wire the money, has been released on NT$100,000 bail (US$3,260) but forbidden to leave Taiwan, prosecutors said. The other four were released without having to post bail.

Wang lost his race in the 2022 elections after getting around 2,000 votes, or less than 1 percent of the total.

According to its website, the Labor Party is a socialist party that supports the unification of Taiwan with China.

(By Sunrise Huang and Lee Hsin-Yin)

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