Taiwan's former fire chief sent back to jail after failing to post S$1.26 million bail

TAIPEI, Taiwan - Huang Ji-min (黃季敏), former director of the Fire Agency, was yesterday sent back to jail after being unable to post a bail of NT$30 million (S$1.26 million), which the Taipei District Court (TDC) yesterday set.

The judge demanded Huang pay NT$5 million and Huang's wife sign a NT$25 million check to guarantee that Huang will appear in court on time in the future. Should Huang fail to show, the money will be recovered by the TDC.

The collegial panel also asked Huang to report to the district police station every night from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m., according to TDC.

Huang was indicted in late 2012 by the Taipei Prosecutors Office and faces a possible life sentence for allegedly taking bribes in the purchase of disaster relief command vehicles and long-range high frequency radio systems from 2002 to 2006.

In 2003 he was appointed by former president Chen Shui-bian (陳水扁) as the director of the Fire Agency.

Given that there is no possibility for collusion after the first stage of cross-examination, and Huang's case can't be closed before his custody ends due to its complexity, the TDC decided to offer him bail after eight months of investigation.

After hearing of the possiblity of being released on bail Huang seemed delighted and said "thank you so much, judges."

However, Huang's family was not able to collect the required bail funds in time and Huang was returned to jail.