Retired general being probed for using bribes for promotions

The China post news staff

The China post news staff–Taiwan’s National Security Bureau (NSB) yesterday confirmed that a former major general in the bureau has been under investigation by prosecutors on charges of using bribes to get promotion. Lai Chen-sheng (賴振生), a retired general who used to hold a position in the NSB, was reportedly been promoted to the high rank because he comes from the same township as former President Chen Shui-bian, according to the Chinese-language United Evening News report yesterday.

He received his promotion in 2002 during Chen’s tenure as head of state. The promotion came almost two years earlier than his peers and therefore had triggered criticism from the military, the report said. Rumors in the military said Lai’s family who lived in the same town — Guantian Township (官田), Tainan County, (now Guantian District of Tainan City) where Chen is from, used to give timely assistance to Chen’s financially-stricken family. After being promoted to the rank, Lai was assigned to the NSB. However, Lai did not even show up for the work for a whole year before he was then transferred to a university to serve as a military instructor until his final retirement, the report said. Lai was reportedly studying at home during the period to take the test to become a military instructor while receiving the monthly NT$ 100,000 pay from the NSB post.

The NSB yesterday admitted that they have found irregularities in Lai’s promotion, while saying that the case, which was first investigated by the military prosecutors, had been turned over to the prosecutors in Banciao District Office since September 2009 for further probes. In response to the accusation made against him, Lai said during investigation that he was simply following the instruction of ex-NSB head Tsai Chao-ming (蔡朝明) who asked him to stay at home to study instead of attending to work in the bureau, according to the report in the latest issue of the Chinese-language Next Magazine.

Tsai, however, noted that he was given orders from the presidential office to give the post to Lai, the report said.