Taiwan charges military officer for corruption

Taiwan charges military officer for corruption

Prosecutors in Taiwan said on Tuesday they had charged a senior military officer with corruption and harming state security after he took bribes from a Chinese agent to act as a spy and even signed a letter promising to surrender to China.

Taiwan has fought for a long time against what it says is a snooper campaign run by Beijing to undermine Taiwan's armed forces and sow dissent in the ranks. China views Taiwan as a sacred part of its territory and has never renounced the use of force to bring the island under its control.

The prosecutors office in southern Taiwan s Kaohsiung city said they were seeking a 12 year sentence for a military colonel who received T $560,000 and $18,000 in bribes from a retired Taiwanese officer.

The retired officer persuaded the Colonel, who had been thinking of leaving the armed forces to stay in service so he could rise up the ranks and act as a spy, it said.

The colonel signed a letter to promise that he would surrender in the event of war with China, the office said.

The colonel was identified as Hsiang Te-en, according to the prosecutors.

China's Taiwan Affairs Office did not respond to a request for comment.

Taiwan's Defense Ministry said that the officer was suspected of violating national security and anti-corruption laws and that it would continue to cooperate with the investigation.

The ministry said the Chinese communists have become a serious threat to us when it comes to recruitment, collection of intelligence and theft of secrets.

The ministry will continue to strengthen counter-intelligence education for officers and soldiers and deepen security investigations, it added.