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Chen Shui-bian appeals for release

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Former president Chen Shui-bian (陳水扁) yesterday appealed to the court to release him from custody so that he could defend himself at the appeals court.

Chen has been in custody since December. He and his wife, Wu Shu-jen (吳淑珍), were sentenced to life in prison for graft on Friday, making them the first former first family in the nation's history to be indicted and convicted.

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Wu met pro-Beijing politician in HK

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The Executive Yuan yesterday said Premier Wu Den-yih (吳敦義) met Hong Kong politician Leung Chun-ying (梁振英) during his visit to Hong Kong on Sept. 5.

Leung is the convenor of the non-official members of the Executive Council of Hong Kong and has been mentioned in Hong Kong media as a likely successor to Donald Tsang (曾蔭權) as the territory’s chief executive in 2012.

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Chen trial was a test of democracy, analysts say

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The trial of former president Chen Shui-bian (陳水扁) was a test of Taiwan’s young democracy — and the country received just average marks, observers say.

The Taipei District Court on Friday found 58-year-old Chen — in detention since December — guilty of embezzling state funds, laundering money, accepting bribes and committing forgery.

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Suspicion rife in US of meddling in Chen trial

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There is widespread suspicion in the US that politics played a role in the sentencing of former president Chen Shui-bian (陳水扁) and his wife Wu Shu-jen (吳淑珍) on Friday. “This is political persecution by judicial means,” said Bob Yang (楊英育), president of the Formosan Association for Public Affairs (FAPA), a Washington-based advocacy organization of Taiwanese-Americans.

The LA Times called the sentence “unexpectedly stiff” and said the trial was “steeped in politics.”

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Chen Shui-bian gets life

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Former president Chen Shui-bian walks behind barbed wire inside the Taipei Detention Center in Tucheng, Taipei County, yesterday before the Taipei District Court sentenced him to life in prison.
PHOTO: AFP

The Taipei District Court yesterday sentenced former president Chen Shui-bian (陳水扁) and his wife to life in prison after handing down a guilty verdict in the graft trial against the former first couple and 11 co-defendants.

The verdict makes Chen the first former president in the country’s history to be indicted and convicted.

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Ma’s choice of Chu more popular than that of Wu

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Wu Den-yih’s (吳敦義) appointment as premier was not as popular as that of vice premier-designate Eric Chu (朱立倫), polls showed yesterday.

A survey conducted by the TVBS Poll Center on Monday night found that 61 percent of respondents said Chu, Taoyuan County commissioner and Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) vice chairman, was suitable for his new job, while 12 percent said he was unsuitable and 27 percent did not give an opinion.

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Magazine lists Ma as one of world’s ‘gutsiest’ leaders

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President Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九) has been selected as one of the world’s “gutsiest” leaders in the September-October issue of the humorous US public affairs magazine mental_floss.

The author of the article, Jennifer Drapkin, said all the people in it have had unbelievable lives.

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Newsflash

Activists from pro-independence organizations and political parties yesterday threatened to sue Taipei Mayor Ko Wen-je (柯文哲) over allowing statues of Chiang Kai-shek (蔣介石) in schools, saying they violate education laws.

Led by members of the Free Taiwan Party and the Taiwanese National Party, a group of about 40 held a rally in front of the Taipei City Government building to denounce Ko.