Ex-President Chen's medical parole extended to May 4

2018/02/05 22:29:40 fontsize-small fontsize-default fontsize-big
CNA file photo

CNA file photo

Taipei, Feb. 5 (CNA) The Agency of Corrections has approved a request by former President Chen Shui-bian (陳水扁) to extend his medical parole to May 4, according to Taichung Prison, which is responsible for Chen's jail sentence.

Chen latest three-month medical parole period was set to end Monday, and the application for an extension filed at least one month ago was approved even if he did not provide all of the necessary documents.

He is required to present a medical report from a medical institution to prove his eligibility to remain on parole, and was reminded of that by the prison in a message sent to him on Jan. 19, according to Taichung Prison Deputy Warden Lee Chin-kuo (李進國).

Chen did not respond to the prison's message.

But Lee said Monday he knew Chen might not be able to get a new medical assessment of his health by the Feb. 5 deadline, so prison authorities agreed to extend his parole to May 4 based on the evaluation put together by his current medical team.

That team's latest report said Chen's illness was "complicated" and could not be cured in prison, and approval to extend his medical parole was granted based on regulations that permit medical parole when an inmate's illness cannot be cured in a penitentiary facility, the Agency of Corrections said.

The next time Chen files a request to further extend his parole, however, he will have to submit a medical assessment by a medical institution, and not just one from his team, according to Lee.

It was the 13th time Chen has applied for an extension to his medical parole.

He is serving a 20-year jail term for corruption, but was given medical parole in January 2015 because of concerns the prison hospital could not adequately care for him and conditions ranging from depression to brain atrophy.

(By Su Mu-chun and S.C. Chang)
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