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Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD)

Military probing those involved in espionage, execution cases

ROC Central News Agency

2011/02/14 22:15:20

By Lee Ming-chung and Sofia Wu

Taipei, Feb. 14 (CNA) Minister of National Defense Kao Hua-chu said Monday the military will get to the bottom of a case in which an army general allegedly spied for China and will discipline all those found to be involved.

Kao gave the assurance after presiding over a meeting of commanding officers from various military branches as well as political warfare division chiefs and department heads at the General Staff office.

The minister was also said to have ordered various military units to carefully assess the impact of one-star general Lo Hsien-che's spying activities on behalf of China.

"We should review the case with pangs in the heart and learn a bitter lesson from the incident that has brought shame on the military," Kao said.

Lo has been detained on charges of espionage since late January following searches of his residence and office. Before his arrest, Lo was head of communications and electronic information at the Army Command Headquarters.

The 51-year-old officer reportedly had access to a Taiwan-U.S. military cooperation project known as Po Sheng, which involved communication links between the armed forces of the two countries.

Unconfirmed reports said Lo's act of betrayal might affect Taiwan's future cooperation with the U.S. in military intelligence and even Taiwan's procurement of U.S.-built weapons.

Lo is believed to be the highest-ranking Taiwanese officer to have allegedly spied for China in nearly five decades. He was believed to have been recruited by overseas Chinese agents in 2004 while being posted in Thailand from 2002-2005.

Kao said the military should review its personnel education, training, recruitment, supervisory and assessment systems as well as its anti-espionage network and take immediate steps to plug any gaps or take corrective measures.

Kao further said any military staff member found to have been involved would be punished in accordance with existing laws and regulations.

Stressing the importance of integrity in military service, Kao said the military should strengthen moral education and instill patriotism and a sense of honor in its manpower cultivation programs.

During the meeting, Kao also demanded that all-out efforts be made to find military staff, regardless of their rank or whether they have retired or are still in active service, culpable in the case of Chiang Kuo-ching, a 20-year-old soldier who was believed to have been wrongly convicted and executed 14 years ago.

Chiang, a soldier at the Air Force Combat Command in Taipei City, was executed in 1997 after he confessed to raping and murdering a 5-year-old girl in September 1996.

The case has now been reopened on the basis of new evidence, and another confession has been obtained, this time from Hsu Jung-chou, a soldier who was serving in the same unit as Chiang at the Air Force Combat Command when the crime was committed.

Hsu, who was previously convicted on sexual abuse charges, was arrested late last month in connection with the 1996 case.



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