You'll never guess what happened to me... serious problem

You would not believe what happened to me.
I got a phone call from my boss telling me that while I was away, he had a phone call from the Ministry of Education telling them that I would not be allowed back in Taiwan because they’d received a letter from the British Government telling them that I was a child-abusing drug addict. Luckily he knew all about the harrassment I had experienced from my first bushiban bosses, whose school I left nearly 2 years ago! and told them this couldn’t possibly be true etc etc. But they said it must be as they had this letter from England. Anyway he wrote a two-page letter about how great a teacher I am and that I’m a non-smoking teetotaller vegetarian so how could I possibly be a drug addict etc. etc. And so the MOE decided to investigate. They contacted the British pseudo-embassy in Taipei who contacted the British Government who said there was no such record about me and that the Director General (or whoever the document claimed to be from) of the Council was not the person who signed the letter and the name on it was not anyone who worked there etc. So the pseudo embassy informed the Taiwanese police and the MOE that the letter was a fake and now it’s all kind of sorted out but I’m still a bit concerned about the whole thing and that my old boss is totally obsessed with me and off her rocker. And now I’m famous in Taiwan amongst the Embassy people and the police. The British Embassy said it was the first time a bushiban boss had gone to the extent of forging a government letter to get someone out of the country! Any words of advice? Does anyone know my rights seeing as this is a unique case?
The worst thing is the crazy people who wrote this forgery are working with small children. It’s disgusting. Anyway, I just want the foriegn community to know what has happened to me and any comments would be appreciated if not only for my own peace of mind.

Fraud is a crime in Taiwan… and another charge you could assert is that of libel.

Did the police investigate your ex-boss. As Tigerman suggests, they should be instigating a crimninal investigation of fraud, and you should be considering a civil suit for libel.


First of all, I think it would be very hard to prove, and secondly, I can imagine the Taiwanese authorities not wanting to investigate or pursue it any further …

It may be difficult to prove… I thought about that as well. But it may be worth the effort, if only to let the ex-boss know that this is serious and that the victim will not tolerate it.

I think the police would be happy to investigate this matter as far as they could. All that is needed is an attorney to get the police moving.

Agree with Tigerman, but I’m not sure what you stand to gain. Of course a crime has been committed, but that is not always enough to get the police moving here.

Thanks for responding to my post already. I’m glad that other foreigners are aware of what happened to me. The police have been involved, although I don’t know to what extent as yet. I only found out about the whole thing on Thursday and I am frantically trying to gather as much information as possible. The British Embassy hinted that my only course of action would be to sue my ex-bosses. But what happens in Taiwan if you sue someone who already seems to be on the verge of bankruptcy?
But I agree that I have to do something, I mean the whole affair is outrageous.

sounds like your current boss is rather terriffic. If your old boss forged that letter, they may not have been alone in their evil scheme. A lot of busiban bosses I’ve met couldn’t have done that themselves due to English and lack of knowledge of official document style letters. I wish you all the best. I hope, if your ex boss is close to bankrupt, you’ll sue for enough to put him out of business. Doesn’t sound like the kind who should be working with kids.

The police don’t necessarily have to investigate this seriously to get the message across. If they just show up, say at the former boss’s place of business (perhaps around when parents pick up their children) and start asking questions, that could be enough to make them think twice about doing this again. After all, they are investigating the case of a child-abusing drug addict teacher! If you can’t get the police to officially do this, it is sometimes possible to persuade an officer to do this off-duty.

Your best bet is probably to work with the British ‘Embassy’ to put pressure on the police to take it seriously. It certainly isn’t in their interests to have Taiwanese running around forging government documents.

But general rule is to be persistent when dealing with the government.

The woman’s obviously barking mad and will try something else in due course, so try to anticipate what that might be.

A visit from the cops I think is essential to let her know that this sort of thing just isn’t on. Otherwise, she 'll only feel bolder in her next move.
I sense you’re not telling the whole story here. What exactly happened between you and the bosses in your last school?

Forging letters from a government agency is pretty serious. Why hasn’t the British reps done anything more?

Thanks for the replies. I’m trying to find out whether anyone will follow up from the British end. I only found out on Thursday evening, so haven’t hear anything as yet from them. My parents are trying to find out who replied to the original enquiry at home and make an official complaint. I’ll keep you posted as to what happened/happens. You’re right about my current boss, he has been wonderful about the whole thing, luckily he has known me for a long time. In fact he was so worried that I would think badly of the Taiwanese people when I found out what had happened. I’ve met so many great people here, it’s such a shame that two people want to create so many problems.
As for the whole story, it is very long, spanning more than 2 and a half years. The bosses accused another foreign teacher of inappropriately touching a student whilst I was still working there. They then harrassed the poor guy until he ended up fleeing Taiwan, never to come back and absolutely hating the place. Other teachers have had numerous problems, most of them leaving and not returning, however, I decided to stay here because I love it so much and my old bosses can’t stand the thought that I am in their country making money when their schools are failing in student numbers.

British civil servants DO something? Are you mad. Watch an episode of “Yes Minister” to get the picture.

wow. psycho.

i wonder if the other countries/‘embassies’ would take it more seriously if this case was regarding them. or is it the nature of the letter that it seems “low priority” to them.

i’m not an english teacher but since my friends at home have asked me about these kinds of jobs for them, is it inappropriate to ask for the name of this psycho-boss’ school?

So the way the system works here is that if you don’t like someone, just send a fake letter to the Ministry in control of his/her work permit who will take the letter unquestioningly at face value, and inform the police. Great.

Does anyone here think that if a foreigner had forged a letter about a Taiwanese person the police would be more likely to act ? Foreigners generally don’t have the support network, or influence, to get the police to act. The BTCO of course would have sufficient stature to press the matter. They might be willing to put a word in someone’s shell-like.

Actually, Closet Queen, I received outstanding assistance from British civil servants last week. While working on a report at work I came across the names of three members of Parliament who are knowledgeable about the subject. I looked them up on the Internet, found their e-mail addresses and wrote to them with a long list of questions. All three wrote back to me within hours with very courteous responses and answers to all my questions. I was astounded. Slightly OT, but I felt a duty to stand up for British civil servants. But maybe they are the exceptions.


MPs are not civil servants. They have to answer to their constituents, and are generally keen to do their job as best they can, or at least put on a convincing show of doing so. If they don’t, they’re highly likely to lose their seats in parliament at the next election. Civil servants are a very different kettle of fish.

But it is pleasing to hear that you did receive such a good response from those chaps in the House of Commons.

It will be disgraceful if BTCO don’t take this any further. It is a very serious matter, and the onus is on BTCO to have it thoroughly investigated and make sure that appropriate action is taken by the local authorities. I hope they do, but I wouldn’t bet anything on it.

A letter or two to your MP might help to chivvy them on if needed.

And yes, I agree with omni here. A letter might actually help. Try it.

Go to the media.