Taiwan's National Police Agency has proposed a law amendment to impose stiffer penalties and fines on telecom and online fraud, as part of the government's efforts to combat fraud crimes that have become more rampant in recent years.
Under the proposal, fraud criminals could face up to 10 years in prison, along with a fine of up to NT$100 million (US$3.15 million), the agency said Thursday.
The proposed amendment will be reviewed during a Cabinet meeting slated for Aug. 30, which the agency will attend, it added.
The proposal came in response to a directive given by President Tsai Ing-wen (???) to tighten penalties and increase fines to combat fraud crimes, as many Taiwanese nationals have been arrested for alleged involvement in fraud operations at home and abroad in recent years.
For example, the police arrested a total of 142 people in Taiwan during operations between July and August, seizing NT$3.7 million in cash, the agency said.
An investigation found that as many as 774 people have fallen victims to the fraud crimes and were scammed out of NT$86.06 million in total, it added.
During the operations, police also found that gangs have become involved in organized telecom fraud, the agency said.
There have also been cases in which Taiwanese were arrested overseas for alleged involvement in telecom fraud and other fraud operations there.
Taiwan is often criticized for having a less severe penalty for fraud, compared with countries such as China.
According to the current Criminal Code in Taiwan, a person convicted of an act of fraud involving three or more people will face a sentence of up to seven years in prison and a fine of up to NT$1 million.
Source: Focus Taiwan