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May 27, 2017

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TSE's Wu not guilty of embezzlement

By Ann Yu--The Supreme Court yesterday found former Taiwan Stock Exchange Corporation (TSE) Chairman Wu Nai-jen (吳乃仁) not guilty of embezzlement. Wu was accused of assisting former Vice Interior Minister Yen Wan-chin (顏萬進) in misusing public funds.

The court ruled that since the regulations regarding expenditure for the chairman's social affairs were vague, there was insufficient evidence to prove that Wu's involvement with Yen was entirely unrelated to public affairs. Even though the two held dinner parties and receptions using public funds, it was hardly possible to differentiate the parties from private encounters or business-related meetings, the court judged.

Prosecutors had claimed Wu and Yen reimbursed a total of NT$1.04 million for their travel, dinner and shopping expenses covering 92 occasions between September 2004 and June 2006. Evidence presented included records of hotel reservations, gifts and dinners, which the court ruled as standard Taiwanese expenses.

Yen was earlier convicted of fraud for using public funds to pay for a hotel. A member of the Democratic Progressive Party, Yen was entitled to have such expenses covered by the party's treasury, according to the court. Instead, Yen took the expense statements to Wu and was reimbursed through the TSE. He was sentenced to prison for eight months, but yesterday had the term reduced to four months.

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