Taiwan News, Staff Writer
2013-10-22 03:58 PM
The committee is conducting an investigation into the allegations of influence peddling by Legislative Speaker Wang Jin-pyng and of illegal wiretapping used to uncover the alleged illegal lobbying.
The Supreme Prosecutors Office Special Investigation Division (SID) asked the MJIB to conduct the eavesdropping, which included bugging a switchboard at the Legislative Yuan.
The SID at first denied the accusation, but was forced to retract its denial later. The investigative body nevertheless still maintained the taps had not resulted in any overheard conversations, leaving 21 compact discs empty because a switchboard number needed added instruments before eavesdropping was possible.
The SID claims were met with widespread disbelief, even though an ad-hoc MOJ committee accepted its version, concluding that the discs had not been tampered with.
Members of the Prosecutorial Evaluation Committee heard a report by the MJIB at its headquarters in Hsintien, New Taipei City, before visiting the surveillance center and learning more about the practical side of conducting wiretaps, reports said.
Prosecutor-General Huang Shih-ming was listed as a defendant for allegedly revealing confidential information about Wang to President Ma Ying-jeou in a meeting at the latter’s residence on August 31. Later the same day, Ma called Premier Jiang Yi-huah and a close aide to discuss Huang’s allegations that Wang had lobbied with the MOJ in favor of an opposition lawmaker.
Jiang said Tuesday that no transcripts of conversations involving Wang had been shown to him. The premier also denied claims that by going straight to the president, Huang had been bypassing him. The top prosecutor felt the allegations against a high political leader like the legislative speaker were so grave he needed to inform the president personally, Jiang said.
Ma and Jiang were questioned as witnesses by the Taipei Prosecutors Office in the case against Huang, while the Control Yuan, the nation’s top government watchdog, still was likely to interview them, reports said.
While judicial investigations continue, Ma and Wang have downplayed their differences, with the legislative speaker saying he was likely to accept an invitation to the Kuomintang’s 19th Congress scheduled for November 10 in Taichung despite the party’s attempt to expel him.
Victories in the court system allowed Wang to hang on to his KMT membership and to his position as speaker. Public revulsion at Ma’s efforts to oust Wang resulted in a backlash forcing the president to try reconciliation, commentators said.
The two rivals appeared friendly at the October 10 National Day celebrations, while Wang cast his vote against an opposition motion of no confidence in Jiang’s Cabinet on October 15.