Ex-diplomat begins community service in-line with court sentence
CNATAIPEI--Taiwan's former representative to Fiji Victor Chin (秦日新) began 48 hours of community service yesterday, in compliance with a 2012 court sentence for irregularities during his service at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA).
February 6, 2013, 12:03 am TWN
Chin reported to the Taipei District Prosecutors Office at 10 a.m. and was assigned a probation officer.
The ex-diplomat was accused of forgery with the intention of misappropriating public funds in 2005 during his tenure as director of the MOFA Department of North American Affairs, but was eventually convicted of instructing a subordinate to falsify official documents.
According to the court document, Chin gave instructions to a subordinate at the department to buy him 36 bottles of wine that would be distributed as gifts when he took up a new post in New Zealand.
At Chin's instruction, the subordinate Yang Ching-hui created a fake list of MOFA officials attending farewell parties, which was used to justify the expenditure of NT$210,000 (US$7,110), the court document said.
Chin was found not guilty of the charges in the first and second trials, but the rulings were overturned in August 2011 by the High Court, which sentenced him to one year in prison.
The prison sentence was later reduced to six months.
Last October, the High Court maintained the sentence in a retrial, which include a three-year suspension of the prison term, a fine of NT$100,000 and 48 hours of community service in consideration of Chin's many years of outstanding service in the field of diplomatic affairs.
Chin was required to report to prosecutors by Tuesday to begin his volunteer service and to pay the fine within two years of the final ruling.
Chin was suspended from his job at MOFA in 2011, when the Foreign Ministry began investigating corruption allegations against him.
Yang, meanwhile, was allowed to enter a deferred prosecution agreement.