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Taoyuan ex-deputy chief Yeh faces being stripped of exemplary award

TAIPEI -- Yeh Shih-wen (葉世文), former deputy magistrate of Taoyuan County, will be stripped of his “exemplary civil servant” title if he is found guilty of corruption, the Interior Ministry said Tuesday.

If he is convicted, Yeh will also be required to return a trophy and NT$50,000 cash prize that were part of the award, Deputy Interior Minister Chen Chwen-jing (陳純敬) said.

Yeh is accused of taking a bribe of NT$16 million (US$532,450) from Farglory Group (遠雄集團) Chairman Chao Teng-hsiung (趙藤雄) to help the company win a tender in April for the construction of a low-cost housing project in Taoyuan County.

Immediately after the matter came to light last Friday, Yeh was dismissed from the deputy magistrate position. He is now being detained pending a formal indictment.

He was named an “exemplary civil servant” in June 2013, when he was chief of the Interior Ministry's Construction and Planning Agency (CPA), mainly for the execution of the government's policy to provide affordable policy.

Chen confirmed that while working at the CPA, Yeh was put on a watchlist by the ministry's ethics office because he was allegedly “socializing too much” and maintaining “complex social circles.”

Despite the lack of direct evidence, the allegations against Yeh were submitted to the Agency Against Corruption for investigation, Chen said.

Chen said he will examine why Yeh was named for and won an “exemplary civil servant” award when he was on a watchlist for possible ethical violations.

Yeh stepped down as CPA chief in June 2013 and became deputy magistrate of the northern Taiwan county shortly afterwards.

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