If anyone is still following the Chen Chu mayoral shenanigans cases; both cases are still pending in the District Court. Nothing has been finalized (from a legal standpoint, I realize from a practical politics standpoint it is decided Grand Dame Chen Chu is the Queen of Kaoshiung)
Back to the law. I got a copy of the District Court Prosecutors motion to decline prosecution. What it said, in Brian summary, was “I (these decisions are made, for better or worse, by 'lone prosecutors”–in theory) was looking into the crime of ‘election connected slander’ (which is a separate crime from the normal crime of slander) and I decided there was insufficient evidence to charge the defendant". He devotes 4 pages to the reasons why, I must confess I have not translated the reasons yet. I am told the rationale(s) are mealy mouthed vagueness. Which is typical, they have a special class in Judge& Prosecutor College in how to write that way (no fooling-true fact)
The KMT ‘victim’ applied (as is his right) for the High Court Prosecutors Office to review the case. As is the norm, the High Court Prosecutor’s, acting like highly trained, responsibility dodging, civil servants, simply bounce the case back down to the District Court Prosecutors office with a memo saying, “you folks should investigate more”. The second look at the case will be by a different section in the Kaoshiung District Prosecutors Office.
Which is where we stand now. I asked around about what the consequences would be of a conviction; would it overturn the election or what. The answer seems to be;if the person is convicted and if they are sent to jail and if less than one third (or maybe one half) of the term has been served then that person is removed from the position and a new special election is run
This apparently happened over in Taitung sometime recently; where some thug got yanked out of his chair and they held a special election and his wife Mrs. Thug slid into his chair. So much for the deterrent effect of jail. If over half the term has been served then the vice whatever it is moves up to take the empty position.
Now turning to the civil case, that case too, is still pending in the District Court. The manual recount was long ago finished and the two sides have stipulated (i.e. agreed through negotiation, not via fact finding/decision by a judge) that 328 of the ballots are “jacked up” (I use a street term because I can not quite tell if they are saying those ballots as invalid, or questionable or what exactly). In any event the margin for Chen Chu has increased not decreased. But—the District Court has not issued a verdict yet because (I think, I am not sure of this) they are waiting to see what happens on the criminal election slander case.
So—that seems to be where we are on all that.
Ballot Master Brian