China still holding 223 Taiwanese deportees from other countries: MAC

A total of 223 Taiwanese, who were deported over the past nine months from other countries on suspicion of telecommunications fraud, are still being held in China, where they were sent, the Mainland Affairs Council (MAC) said Sunday.

The Taiwan government is seeking to bring back the suspects to face trial in Taiwan, the MAC said.

The 223 Taiwanese suspects are being held in detention centers across China, the MAC said, calling on China to uphold its agreements with Taiwan on joint efforts to combat cross-border telecom fraud and to continue such cooperation to protect the rights and interests of the people on both sides of the Taiwan Strait.

According to the MAC, the 223 fraud suspects include 50 who were arrested in Kenya in April and August 2016 and were sent to China, where they are being held at a detention center in Beijing's Haidian District.

It said 32 suspects deported from Malaysia in April 2016 are now in custody at two detention centers in Zhuhai, Guangdong Province, while 21 others sent from Malaysia last November are at a detention center in Xiangyang City, Hubei Province.

In Wenzhou, Zhejiang Province, there are 25 Taiwanese suspects who were deported from Cambodia last June, while 13 others who were sent from the same country in September are being held at a detention center in Nanjing, Jiangsu Province, the MAC said.

A group of 78 suspects deported from Armenia last September is being held at two detention centers in Guangzhou, Guangdong Province, and four Taiwanese sent back from Vietnam earlier this month are in detention in Huzhou, Zhejiang Province, the MAC said.

It said the Taiwan government will stick to its policy regarding cross-border telecom fraud and will continue to work to bring back the 223 Taiwanese suspects to face criminal prosecution and trial.

The Chinese authorities have worked with foreign governments to bring the Taiwan suspects to face trial in China as many, if not most, of the fraud victims are Chinese citizens. Another reason for the Chinese to want to try the suspects themselves is the perceived lenience with which many of the suspects have been treated by Taiwan's justice system.

Source: Focus Taiwan News Channel