Taiwenese Rapper Refuses To Apologize For Lyrics, Faces 2 Years In Prison
By Roman Wolfe and EbenGregory
Date: 8/13/2006 11:30 pm
Former pop/rap group L.A. Boyz member, Jeff Huang, was indicted this week (Aug. 11) for a three-year-old song with threatening lyrics towards Taiwanese lawmakers
Huang, who was also a member of the rap group Machi, is accused of threatening Taiwan government officials on various songs, in response to a 2003 amendment to change copyright laws that would have limited artists' compensation from legal download sites.
Prosecutors claim Huang threatened 43 legislators, including former Democratic Progressive Party Legislator Chiu Yi-ying. Officials say Huang accused the legislators of "murdering the music industry in Taiwan" and "being bribed by website owners."
The lyrics warned legislators to be on alert and implied some might die unexpected deaths. Yi-Ying said Huang insulated her and other lawmakers and threatened her personal safety.
Yi-ying and other officials claim it is inappropriate for a singer to list the names of legislators and criticize them in such a manner.
The new indictment marks the second time legal action has been brought against Huang. The rapper said several lawmakers tried to press charges against him, but were unsuccessful in their attempts.
"[Huang] may have misunderstood, or simply did not understand the background of what we have been doing," Chiu said. "I just need an apology [to drop the lawsuit]. That is all."
Huang refuses to apologize for criticizing Yi-Ying and the other officials.
"I do not understand why I should apologize," Huang told reporters. "If she criticizes my music, I am more than happy to accept it. But she is complaining about the truth, and I will not compromise when it comes to that."
Other musicians are supporting Huang and some fans of the rapper called Yi-ying's office to voice their support, while others allegedly verbally abused Yi-ying's assistants.