Premier William Lai is calling for stricter measures to cope with Taiwanese fraud rings operating overseas. Lai was speaking on Thursday at a Cabinet meeting.
Lai said telecom fraud rings have seriously damaged Taiwan’s image abroad. Lai said authorities have achieved some success in dealing with crime committed by Taiwan nationals overseas. However, he said that the government should continue to learn from international and cross-strait agencies about effective preventative measures and put them into practice locally.
Lai called for the justice ministry to work on signing bilateral agreements with other countries to strengthen joint efforts in fighting international crime. The premier said he will continue to promote a joint agreement with China to fight crime. Cabinet spokesperson Hsu Kuo-yung spoke on behalf of the premier.
Hsu said, “We are asking the Mainland Affairs Council, the justice ministry and all related departments to work towards promoting a Joint Fight against Crime and Mutual Legal Assistance Agreement with the Chinese government. The two sides would agree on sharing criminal intelligence, exchanging documents and returning illegal gains to help bust fraud rings and protect the rights of the public.”
Lai also called on the justice and interior ministries to seek out the kingpins behind the fraud rings and to track their whereabouts to stop their operations earlier.
Taiwan and China in theory already have an agreement on joint law enforcement and judicial cooperation. However, the Chinese side has reneged on the terms of the agreement in the past 18 months due to Beijing’s boycott of the Tsai Ing-wen administration.