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May 23, 2017

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Premier urges MOJ to review wiretap rules

TAIPEI, Taiwan -- Premier Jiang Yi-huah (江宜樺) requested the Ministry of Justice (MOJ) evaluate recently amended wiretapping regulations and draft supplementary measures on an amendment proposal as soon as possible.

Jiang said on Friday that the new amendment will take effect five months after the president announces the law, which means the prosecutors and police can stick to the original regulations for a few months.

The premier said at the same time, as prosecutors, police and investigative bureaus all claim that the new law would have a great impact on future crime investigations, the MOJ should come up with a measure to deal with potential difficulties in terms of applying for a wiretapping warrant from the court.

On Jan. 14, the Legislative Yuan passed the third reading of the amendment to the Communication Security and Surveillance Act, which stipulate that should prosecutors require an individual to be monitored, they have to file an official report to justify their reason and apply for a warrant from a district court.

The newly amended article states that one wiretapping warrant is required to monitor one person for one criminal case only, which means that if the individual is allegedly involved in a second case, prosecutors must apply for another warrant in order to continue their surveillance.

After the Legislature passed the amendment, many prosecution agencies across Taiwan expressed their concern over the amended bill, including the prosecutors offices in Kaohisung, Yunlin, Hualien, Taitung and Kinmen.

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