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Human Rights Protection and Anti-Corruption
MNN TV station in New York broadcast a program featuring an international forum "Human Rights and Anti-Corruption: The Tai Ji Men Case."
The event, which commemorated International Human Rights Day (December 10) and International Anti-Corruption Day (December 9), was organized by the Center for Studies on New Religions and Human Rights Without Frontiers on December 6, 2021, in Washington, D.C., the world's political capital. The forum, which participants could attend in person or virtually, focused on the Tai Ji Men case, which has lasted for a quarter of a century in Taiwan.
Because the case involves gross human rights violations and religious persecution and has significant global implications, Prof. Massimo Introvigne, a world-renowned scholar of new religions as well as the founder and managing director of the Italian Center for Studies on New Religions, flew to Washington, D.C., using his decades of professional experience in protecting human rights and religious freedom to speak out for justice and support Tai Ji Men, even though COVID testing was required for travelers from Europe to the United States.
The Tai Ji Men case began in 1996 in Taiwan when a prosecutor named Hou Kuan-jen falsely accused Tai Ji Men of fraud, tax evasion, and raising goblins. In 2007, Taiwan's Supreme Court found Tai Ji Men not guilty of tax evasion or any other charges. In a democracy adhering to the rule of law, the case should have ended there; instead, Taiwan's National Taxation Bureau disregarded the Supreme Court's decision and continued to impose unjustified taxes on Tai Ji Men. In August 2020, based on the unlawful tax bill, the taxation bureau in cooperation with the Administrative Enforcement Agency illegally auctioned and forcibly confiscated Tai Ji Men's sacred land intended for a self-cultivation center for Tai Ji Men members.
Prof. Massimo Introvigne stated, "In the Tai Ji Men case, bureaucrats forgot, or willingly ignored, that they are 'civil servants' and should work at the service of the deeper aims of the state, human rights and the well-being of citizens. Instead, they believed they were called to protect bureaucracy for bureaucracy's sake, not to mention they tried to enrich themselves through the bonuses." "The Tai Ji Men case of 'corruption' went beyond taxes and money. It attacked the very soul of a nation, corrupting it deeply. Only a solution to the Tai Ji Men case may stop this slow erosion and poisoning of the integrity of Taiwan's soul, a kind of process that, as history shows, normally leads to the ruin of a nation," he added.