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Surveillance on agent completely legal: NSB

The National Security Bureau (NSB) yesterday denied wrongdoing after an agent filed a lawsuit accusing the bureau of illegally eavesdropping on him.

The NSB said in a statement that it placed the agent, Colonel Wu Chao-han (吳兆漢), under surveillance in accordance with regulations, as it had obtained a court order legally authorizing the operation.

The statement came after a Chinese-language report yesterday in which Wu accused the nation's top intelligence agency of illegally monitoring him for more than a year.

According to the report, Wu recently filed a lawsuit with Shihlin District Court. The suit says that the NSB had been monitoring Wu based on unsubstantiated charges, and had not informed him that the surveillance operation had been terminated until December last year.

Wu is suing NSB head Tsai De-sheng (蔡得勝) and other officials for psychological trauma and demanding NT$10 million in compensation.

He is also asking for another NT$50,000 to be paid for the bureau's failure to inform him it had terminated its observation of his movements, the report said.

In response, the intelligence bureau said yesterday that the wiretapping on Wu, conducted between Aug. 1, 2007 to Sept. 20, 2008, was a legal operation that had been approved by authorities prior to its execution.

The bureau had also informed Wu of the surveillance operation's conclusion via registered mail sent to the colonel's residence in accordance with the laws, the NSB statement said.

Members of the government watchdog, the Control Yuan, also deemed that the NSB followed proper legal procedures in Wu's case when they examined the bureau's surveillance operations in July 2011, it said.

The NSB stressed that it has been following President Ma Ying-jeou's directive that all electronic surveillance be conducted through proper procedures and only conducted when necessary.

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