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Former Chung Shan Hospital President Hsieh Shih-ming (center). (CNA photo)
TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — Two former presidents and other staff members of Chung Shan Hospital in Taipei were charged on Tuesday (Nov. 8) for allegedly colluding with travel agencies to allow 24,600 Chinese to come to Taiwan under the guise of health checkups.
This breaks the law covered by the Act Governing Relations between the People of the Taiwan Area and the Mainland Area.
The National Immigration Agency and Investigation Bureau cited a case they had recently worked on to investigate a Chinese woman who had illegally come to Taiwan to prostitute herself, CNA reported. The agencies found the woman gained entry to Taiwan using the excuse of a health examination.
Suspecting the woman had used false documents to apply for a medical checkup in Taiwan, the agencies referred her case to the Taipei District Prosecutors Office.
According to prosecutors handling the case, since Aug. 1, 2019, Chinese authorities have banned Chinese individuals from traveling to Taiwan for sightseeing. With that policy in place, the easiest way for them to visit Taiwan was to apply for "health checkups," which are allowed under the Taiwan Strait medical service exchange program.
Medical centers and non-medical center hospitals should not charge Chinese people applying for health checkups less than NT$20,000 (US$620) and NT$15,000 per person, respectively, the prosecutors said. They added that those who are approved can stay for a maximum of 15 days.
Prosecutors determined that former Chung Shan Hospital presidents Li Wei-cheng (李偉政) and Hsieh Shih-ming (謝士明), as well as other staffers, knew these Chinese people came to Taiwan for simple medical examinations that cost only NT$2,500-3,000, but issued false receipts of NT$15,000 for the examinations. The travel agencies first paid the full NT$15,000, but later received the difference returned to them by the hospital, according to the prosecutors.
According to the prosecutors’ statistics, Li, Hsieh, and others were suspected of colluding with travel agencies to issue false documents from 2016 to 2020, allowing 24,600 Chinese people to come to Taiwan under the guise of medical examinations, earning more than NT$17.85 million, per CNA.
The Taipei District Prosecutors Office on Tuesday indicted Li, Hsieh, other hospital staffers, and travel agency operators involved in the case on suspicion of breaking the Act Governing Relations between the People of the Taiwan Area and the Mainland Area, and forgery.
Updated : 2022-11-12 18:53 GMT+08:00
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