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Aug 4, 2007

Shih Ming-teh to be charged with violating parade law

Shih Ming-teh (施明德) and 15 other leaders of the Oct. 10 siege on the Presidential Palace (天下圍攻) are being charged with violating the Assembly and Parade Law.

Shih and those others charged are saying the Assembly and Parade Law is a joke left over from an authoritarian time (true) that the DPP should have gotten rid of already (hard to do when you can't pass laws in a blue legislature, but still true) and expressed surprise the DPP government would now use it to charge him.

Shih said he would appear in court for the charges and not appeal any decision. Shih sarcastically noted he has been imprisoned by every previous president of Taiwan, had expected A-bian wouldn't put him in jail but it looked like the odds of going to jail were pretty good.

The Taipei District Prosecutor's Office wrapped up the preliminary investigation yesterday. The Executive is not directly involved. The prosecutor in this case said Shih knew he was acting illegally and had no regrets, an important reason he pressed charges.

Meanwhile, since it was then KMT chairman and Taipei mayor Ma Ying-jeou who violated all precedent and allowed these people their month long, 24 hour-a-day rally in the first place, some DPP people said Ma owes an apology (to the city? to Shih? I'm not sure). Using rhetoric that you may hear on a playground, Ma's response was that A-bian should say he's sorry since the whole parade was a result of A-bian's (unproven) corruption. Ma added that the KMT had already brought a bill to alter the Assembly and Parade Law, a decision made soon after Ma became chairman.

I can find information about the bill being proposed, and a DPP response that the KMT's propsoed changes were totally wreckless, as well as a personal favor to Shih more than anything else. It looks like the DPP held the proposed amendments up in committee.


DPP presidential candidate Frank Hsieh said "even a disgusting law is a law," apparently supporting the decision to prosecute.

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