CHEM officials receive jail terms for armored vehicle procurement fraud

10/20/2021 05:57 PM
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"Clouded Leopard" armored vehicles deployed in this year
"Clouded Leopard" armored vehicles deployed in this year's Han Kuang military drills in New Taipei in September. CNA file photo

Taipei, Oct. 20 (CNA) Taiwan Taichung District Court sentenced the chairman, president, vice president and other officials from Chung-Hsin Electric and Machinery Manufacturing Corp. (CHEM), a contractor for the domestically produced CM-32 "Clouded Leopard" armored vehicle project, to jail terms ranging from six months to six and a half years Wednesday.

Taichung District Court sentenced CHEM Chairman Chiang Yi-fu (江義福) to six years and six months for breaking the Securities and Exchange Act and Criminal Code of the Republic of China.

Company President Kuo Hui-chuan (郭慧娟) received two years, while Vice President Lee Liang-chang (李良章) was sentenced to four years and two months, and Manager Pan Shih-yuan (潘世遠) received two years.

In addition, illegal income of nearly NT$2.1 billion (US$75 million) earned by the company was confiscated, the court said, adding that the case which goes back to a procurement project from 2015, can be appealed.

CHEM won a Ministry of National Defense (MND) bid in 2012 to provide chassis for an eight-wheeled armored vehicle, officially called the Taiwan Infantry Fighting Vehicle (TIFV), but was later found to have violated the contract by importing sub-quality materials from China.

As a result, many of the 326 chassis provided to the MND frequently leaked oil and the vehicles malfunctioned once every two days on average, according to the Ministry of Justice in 2015.

(By Chao Li-yen and Lee Hsin-Yin)

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