CTBA Chairman Jeffrey Koo Jr allowed to visit Japan for meetings

Taichung Mayor Lu Shiow-yen, second left, and Chinese Taipei Baseball Association chairman Jeffrey Koo Jr, second right, cheer as Taiwan win the gold medal at the Asian Baseball Championship in Taichung on Sunday.

The High Court on Monday lifted travel restrictions on Chinese Taipei Baseball Association (CTBA) chairman Jeffrey Koo Jr (辜仲諒) after he posted a guaranteed bond of NT$500 million (US$16.34 million) to attend meetings in Japan. Koo, 55, has been embroiled in two major financial scandals, which are under appeal.
He became the owner of the Brothers Baseball Club in Taiwan’s professional circuit after a NT$400 million deal to buy the Brother Elephants franchise in 2013. He was last year elected as CTBA chairman.
After reviewing an application by Koo’s lawyers and considering his role as CTBA chairman, the court lifted the ban so that he could travel to Japan next month to participate in high-level meetings for the World Baseball Softball Confederation (WBSC) and attend the final round of the Premier 12 competition.
CTBA secretary-general Richard Lin (林宗成) yesterday said that “we welcome the decision. Koo as CTBA chairman needs to take part at these important WBSC meetings, where details of organizing baseball event at Tokyo Olympics will be discussed. Taiwan’s team doing well in recent competitions and Koo being allowed to travel to Japan are positive developments, and have boosted the morale of the baseball community.”
The court lifted the ban from Nov. 8 to 23, as Koo’s lawyers cited the Premier 12 final round to be held in Tokyo from Nov. 11 to 17, and WBSC members’ meeting and sessions with Olympic officials to be held in Osaka on Nov. 21, when a board election is to be held and Koo is expected to contest a position on the WBSC executive body.
The court said in a statement that the judges agreed with the application, “as the meetings will concern our nation’s rights to participate in important competitions and have common benefits for society.”