Taiwan ex-president Chen indicted on additional embezzlement charge

[JURIST] Taiwan prosecutors filed a new indictment against former president Chen Shui-bian [BBC profile; JURIST news archive] Wednesday, less than two weeks after Chen was sentenced to life in prison [JURIST report] on other corruption charges. The new charge accuses Chen of embezzling $330,000 [Taiwan News report] from funds he received to travel overseas while president. Chen denies the charge and is appealing for its dismissal. Chen, who has always maintained his innocence, now seeks to apply US law [AP report] in the case against him, claiming that former colonial power Japan never transferred power over Taiwan to its current government.

Earlier this month, the Taipei District Court denied [JURIST report] Chen's request for release pending appeal. Last month, Chen filed suit [JURIST report] against the three judges hearing his corruption case, accusing them of illegally prolonging his detention. Chen was indicted [JURIST report] on corruption charges in December. He has staged three hunger strikes in protest of the charges against him, and in January he unsuccessfully appealed [JURIST reports] his pretrial detention. Chen has long argued that current Taiwanese President Ma Ying-jeou [official website; JURIST news archive] is using Chen's trial to distance himself from Chen's anti-China views.

 

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