Wellington Koo (politician, born 1958)

Wellington Koo (Chinese: 顧立雄; pinyin: Gù Lìxióng; born 31 October 1958) is a Taiwanese lawyer and politician. During his legal career, Koo represented several politicians. His own political career began with an unsuccessful campaign for the Taipei mayoralty in 2013. In 2016, he was elected a legislator at large representing the Democratic Progressive Party. Koo left the Legislative Yuan to lead the Ill-gotten Party Assets Settlement Committee. In 2017, he became chairman of the Financial Supervisory Commission.

Wellington Koo
Koo Li-hsiung

Koo Li-Hsiung-1-by Ring Chang (cropped).JPG
Chairperson of Financial Supervisory Commission of the Republic of China
Assumed office
8 September 2017
ViceCheng Cheng-mount, Huang Tien-mu
Chang Chuang-chang, Huang Tien-mu
Preceded byLee Ruey-tsang
Chairman of the Ill-gotten Party Assets Settlement Committee
In office
31 August 2016 – 8 September 2017
Succeeded byLin Feng-cheng
Member of the Legislative Yuan
In office
1 February 2016 – 11 August 2016
Succeeded byJulian Kuo
ConstituencyRepublic of China
Personal details
Born (1958-10-31) 31 October 1958 (age 61)
Taipei, Taiwan
NationalityRepublic of China
Political partyDemocratic Progressive Party
Spouse(s)Wang Mei-hua
Alma materNational Taiwan University
New York University

Early lifeEdit

Koo was born in Taipei in 1958, to Mainlander parents originally from Shanghai. He attended National Taiwan University before earning a master's degree in public service law from New York University. Koo passed the Taiwanese bar exam in 1983, and began teaching law at Chinese Culture University in 1993, a job he held until 2003.[1]

Legal careerEdit

Koo worked for Formosa Transnational Attorneys at Law, a firm founded by Fan Kuang-chun and John Chen. While with the firm, Koo, Lee Fu-tien, and four other Taiwanese lawyers served as liaisons between taishang based in mainland China and the businesspeople's Chinese attorneys.[2] He also mentored Su Chiao-hui and represented Chen Shui-bian and Annette Lu during the 2004 presidential election.[1] Other clients include Chao Chien-ming in a 2006 embezzlement scandal, and the Hung Chung-chiu family in 2013.[3] Koo has also served as legal counsel for Lee Teng-hui and Tsai Ing-wen,[4][5] as well as the student activists who led the 2014 Sunflower protests and the 2015 protest of curriculum guidelines.[6][7] In 2014, he joined the defense team of Chiou Ho-shun [zh],[8] a man subject to the longest criminal case in Taiwanese judicial history who had been imprisoned for the murder of Lu Cheng in 1987.[9][10] In December 2015, Koo, representing the Democratic Progressive Party as a whole, charged Kuomintang chairman Eric Chu with attempting to buy votes.[11] He also acted as the DPP's legal counsel in a case against a group of KMT legislators who alleged that Tsai Ing-wen had engaged in land speculation.[12]

Political careerEdit

In September 2013,[3] Koo announced his intent to run for the mayoralty of Taipei as a member of the Democratic Progressive Party.[13][14] A primary held in May 2014, after the Sunflower Movement, was won by Pasuya Yao, and Koo dropped out of the race.[15] Yao later dropped out of the race, endorsing Ko Wen-je, who won the mayoral election as an independent candidate.

Koo, then the director of the Judicial Reform Foundation, was selected for the Democratic Progressive Party's proportional representation ballot in November 2015.[16] Listed forth on the ballot during the 2016 legislative election, he won a seat in the Legislative Yuan.[17][18] In his time as legislator, he called for the establishment of a government commission on human rights.[19] Koo also coauthored amendments to the Act Governing Relations with Hong Kong and Macau in an attempt to simply the process for political asylum-seekers from those areas to Taiwan.[20] He also proposed an amendment to the Narcotics Hazard Prevention Act, stating that people involved in the illegal drug trade should be treated for addiction prior to being put on trial.[21] The Act Governing the Handling of Ill-gotten Properties by Political Parties and Their Affiliate Organizations, which he helped to write, was passed in July and Koo was named to a commission set up to investigate questionable assets in August.[22][23] He stepped down from the Legislative Yuan to take the appointment, and was succeeded in office by Julian Kuo.[24] Koo assumed the committee chairmanship despite the Kuomintang citing Article 20 of the Act, which requires nonpartisan committee members, in its objections to Koo's leadership.[25][26] Koo named most of the committee members on 24 August, and the group was officially established on 31 August.[27][28]

Koo was appointed to the chairmanship of the Financial Supervisory Commission in September 2017, succeeding Lee Ruey-tsang on the same day that William Lai replaced Lin Chuan as premier.[29] Koo stated shortly before taking control of the FSC that he sought to implement a "differentiated management style" in which financial institutions that ranked higher would be allowed more regulatory freedom to innovate within the financial services sector, and those institutions that did less well would be granted less latitude.[30]

Personal lifeEdit

Koo is married to Wang Mei-hua.[31]


  1. ^ a b Chuang, Jimmy (5 December 2004). "Koos's legal experience helping DPP". Taipei Times. Retrieved 15 February 2016.
  2. ^ Ko, Shu-ling (21 January 2004). "SEF dispatches lawyers to help `spies' in China". Taipei Times. Retrieved 26 December 2017.
  3. ^ a b "Attorney Wellington Koo announces candidacy for Taipei Mayor". Taiwan News. 25 September 2013. Retrieved 20 February 2016.
  4. ^ Palazzolo, Joe (30 June 2011). "Former Taiwanese President Charged With Stealing State Funds". Wall Street Journal. Retrieved 15 February 2016.
  5. ^ Shih, Hsiu-chuan; Wang, Chris (3 October 2013). "Tsai gets censured over Yu Chang case". Taipei Times. Retrieved 15 February 2016.
  6. ^ Chang, Rich (22 April 2014). "Prosecutors question protest leaders". Taipei Times. Retrieved 15 February 2016.
  7. ^ Chien, Hui-ju; Huang, Shin-po; Chin, Jonathan (18 September 2015). "Anti-curriculum students summoned to court for charges". Taipei Times. Retrieved 15 February 2016.
  8. ^ Loa, Lok-sin (28 August 2014). "New appeal bid for longest serving death row inmate". Taipei Times. Retrieved 15 February 2016.
  9. ^ Huang, Shelley (14 April 2009). "Death sentence confirmed in endless case". Taipei Times. Retrieved 15 February 2016.
  10. ^ Chao, Vincent Y. (29 July 2011). "Longest-running murder case finally comes to end". Taipei Times. Retrieved 15 February 2016.
  11. ^ Pan, Jason (1 January 2016). "Battle lines drawn over vote-buying accusations". Taipei Times. Retrieved 15 February 2016.
  12. ^ Wang, Cheng-chung; Lin, Chang-shun; Chang, S. C. (14 December 2015). "DPP sues KMT lawmakers over Tsai's land deals". Central News Agency. Retrieved 10 August 2016.
  13. ^ Wang, Chris (25 February 2014). "Sean Lien has to address 'princeling' status: DPP". Taipei Times. Retrieved 15 February 2016.
  14. ^ Wang, Chris (3 March 2014). "Non-KMT Taipei mayoral hopeful debates set for TV". Taipei Times. Retrieved 15 February 2016.
  15. ^ Wang, Chris (15 May 2014). "Pasuya Yao wins DPP's first-stage Taipei primary". Taipei Times. Retrieved 15 February 2016.
  16. ^ Chen, Hui-ping (25 November 2015). "DPP announces legislator-at-large list". Taipei Times. Retrieved 15 February 2016.
  17. ^ Gerber, Abraham (12 December 2015). "Koo to cease campaigning for unendorsed candidates". Taipei Times. Retrieved 15 February 2016.
  18. ^ Chen, Yu-fu (31 January 2016). "President's rights record slammed". Taipei Times. Retrieved 15 February 2016.
  19. ^ Gerber, Abraham (2 July 2016). "Groups call for national human rights commission". Taipei Times. Retrieved 10 August 2016.
  20. ^ Gerber, Abraham (2 July 2016). "Campaigners urge amendments to asylum regulations". Taipei Times. Retrieved 10 August 2016.
  21. ^ Hsiao, Alison (4 August 2016). "Treatment is not decriminalization: lawmaker". Taipei Times. Retrieved 10 August 2016.
  22. ^ "Koo named head of ill-gotten assets committee". China Post. 10 August 2016. Retrieved 12 August 2016.
  23. ^ Chung, Jake (26 July 2016). "Legislature approves law on ill-gotten party assets". Taipei Times. Retrieved 10 August 2016.
  24. ^ Tzou, Jiing-wen; Chin, Jonathan (10 August 2016). "Koo to head new assets commission". Taipei Times. Retrieved 10 August 2016.
  25. ^ Yang, Chun-hui; Chung, Li-hua; Chung, Jake (12 August 2016). "Committee may question Ma, Lee: Koo". Taipei Times. Retrieved 12 August 2016.
  26. ^ Hsu, Stacy (11 August 2016). "Koo's appointment ill-judged: KMT". Taipei Times. Retrieved 11 August 2016.
  27. ^ Yang, Chun-hui; Chin, Jonathan (24 August 2016). "Members named for assets committee". Taipei Times. Retrieved 31 August 2016.
  28. ^ Tai, Ya-chen; Hsieh, Chia-chen; Hsu, Elizabeth (31 August 2016). "Commission to investigate KMT assets launched". Central News Agency. Retrieved 31 August 2016.
  29. ^ Chen, Wei-han (8 September 2017). "Lai to replace two Cabinet ministers, retain all others". Taipei Times. Retrieved 10 September 2017.
  30. ^ Lin, Sean (7 September 2017). "Koo vows 'differentiated' style". Taipei Times. Retrieved 10 September 2017.
  31. ^ Strong, Matthew (29 June 2016). "Copyright expert could become MOEA vice minister". Taiwan News. Retrieved 10 August 2016.