Taipei, June 19 (CNA) An amendment to the National Security Act cleared the legislative floor Wednesday, with heavier punishments for practices that jeopardize national security or social order, including developing organizations and collecting confidential information for China.
The existing act bans people from spying, collecting, consigning or delivering confidential documents, pictures, information or articles, or developing organizations for official use of a foreign country, including China, for its military, political parties or other official organizations.
Under the revised law, new regulations have been set that prohibit anyone from initiating, sponsoring, hosting, manipulating, commanding or developing organizations for the use of Hong Kong, Macau, or overseas hostile forces.
The new act also expands national security protection to any Taiwanese-based server, banning people from prying, collecting, consigning or delivering confidential electronic documents in the public sector.
Anyone found to have jeopardized national security or social order by developing organizations for China will be subject to imprisonment of at least seven years and fines of between NT$50 million (US$1.6 million) and NT$100 million.
The penalties for leaking, consigning or delivering confidential documents are imprisonment for up to seven years and fines of up to NT$10 million, while the punishment for collecting secrets is a jail term of up to five years and a fine of up to NT$3 million, according to the amended act.
Under the existing rules, any practices that threaten national security are subject to imprisonment of up to five years and a fine of up to NT$1 million.
The revised act also stipulates that military personnel, public servants and teachers at public schools who are convicted of violating the National Security Act will be deprived of their pension rights.