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Former Taiwan party boss on corruption charges
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BEIJING, Nov. 26 (Xinhua) -- The Taipei District Court opened on Monday the trial of the former chairman of Taiwan's ruling Democratic Progressive Party Yu Shyi-kun, on corruption charges related to misuse of special funds, the island's media reported.

Yu faces charges of document forgery and taking advantage of his posts to embezzle funds.

Besides Yu, four other people including Yu's wife Yang Pao-yu and Yu's three aids appeared for the trial in the court. All the five have denied the charges.

After the first day's hearing, Yu told the waiting press he did not embezzle from the fund, local media reported.

The prosecutors alleged that between October 2000 and December 2005, Yu had used other people's receipts worth 2.38 million New Taiwan dollars to apply for reimbursements from the special fund. Special discretionary funds are available to leading civil servants and politicians when in office. Half of the payment should be claimed with receipts, while the other half can be claimed with merely a signature of the leaders.

Yu Shyi-kun formally resigned his chairmanship on Sept. 27, days after he was charged with corruption and forgery.

Taiwan prosecutors indicted Lu Hsiu-Lien (Annette Lu), Chen Tang-shan (Mark Chen), and Yu Shyi-kun of the ruling DPP and another eight people on corruption charges for their misuse of special funds on Sept. 21. The cases were transferred on Oct. 17 to the Taipei District Court.

The Taipei District Court opened the trial of the deputy chief of the Taiwan authority Lu on Nov. 19 on graft charges related to misuse of special funds.

Lu denied the charges, saying she was unable to embezzle the fund since she did not know the procedures to claim reimbursements or where the receipts used for the reimbursements were from, local media reported.

Chen's case is scheduled to begin on Dec. 3. (One U.S. dollar equals to 32 New Taiwan dollars)

(Xinhua News Agency, November 27, 2007)

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