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Detained Taiwan ex-president Chen again stages hunger strike

[JURIST] Former Taiwanese President Chen Shui-bian [BBC profile; JURIST news archive] on Friday staged another hunger strike to protest corruption charges he faces, a Taiwanese official at the detention center where Chen is being held said Sunday. Chen was indicted on charges of embezzlement, receiving bribes, forgery, and money laundering in December, and staged an earlier hunger strike to protest the allegations when he was first detained [JURIST reports] in November. Chen has maintained that the charges against him are politically motivated, and in January unsuccessfully [JURIST report] appealed his pretrial detention. He is next scheduled to appear in court [Taipei Times report] on Tuesday.

Earlier this month, Chen's wife, Wu Shu-Chen, pleaded guilty to charges [JURIST report] of money-laundering and forgery, but denied charges that she embezzled from the presidential state affairs fund. Chen's sister-in-law has also pleaded guilty [JURIST report] to charges that she had forged documents and transferred money to bank accounts upon orders from Chen and Wu. In September 2008, Chen was cleared [JURIST report] of separate defamation charges.

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