Civil servant bribed in case of bones, bags and subsidy
The China Post news staff
June 10, 2014, 12:00 am TWN
New Taipei City's Investigation Bureau cracked a bribery case involving morticians and a civil servant mixing animal and human remains in order to receive subsidies for transplanting a graveyard.
According to the investigators, the Land Administration Department of New Taipei City launched a land reclaim project in some areas of the Bali District in 2012, but in the area were many old graveyards housing unidentified bodies. In answer to this problem, the department entrusted morticians to move the bodies elsewhere.
The Land Administration Department provides NT$7,500 to NT$8,000 subsidy for each bag of remains collected, so the morticians in question started to purchase pig bones from shops in the greater Taipei area in order to pad the bags along with their pockets.
According to the Bureau, morticians put pig bones in with human ones and gave them to officials to receive more subsidies.
Investigators said that the morticians bribed the civil servant of the Bali District Office overseeing the moving of the bodies. To look the other way, the civil servant, surnamed Lien, was given NT$2 million and also treated to up to ten trips to hostess bars in Tamsui.
After receiving reports about this alleged corruption, Bureau investigators and prosecutors from Shilin District Prosecutors Office started looking into the case and questioned over 10 people during the course of it.
Prosecutors said that six suspects, including Lien and the morticians, were released on bail. According to prosecutors, there are between 4,000 and 5,000 bags of remains that had animal bones mixed in. Suspects made over NT$10 million in illegal profits from the crime.
The Investigation Bureau said that the suspects violated the Anti-Corruption Act and prosecutors will continue investigating this case before taking further actions.