Controversy over Donations to Peter Liang Continues

Jerry Shiao, president of the Chinese Consolidated Benevolent Associated, announced that the leftover money raised for the Peter Liang case will be returned to donors. (Image via World Journal video)

The controversy over donations to Peter Liang continues in the Chinese community. After the Lin Sing Association formed a task force consisting of nine members to audit their books, the Chinese Consolidated Benevolent Association (CCBA), which has also been questioned for its use of the money it raised for Liang, announced it will return the money to the donors.

After Liang, a former police officer who accidentally shot dead innocent African American Akai Gurley while patrolling a public housing building in Brooklyn, was indicted, several community organizations raised money for his legal defense. But with the case having been over for a long time, they are being questioned over how they plan to use the money that is left. At a press conference on Oct. 3, Jerry Shiao, president of CCBA, which had not announced a plan before, said the money left will be returned to the donors one by one. If the donors cannot be found, the money will be donated to senior centers.

Shiao said the CCBA raised $85,000 for Liang, and Lin Sing raised $170,000. It turned out that the money Lin Sing raised was more than enough. So the money CCBA raised has been untouched. The organization originally planned to save the money for other money-consuming incidents that might happen to the community in the future. “Now some people questioned our books. I can guarantee you that our books are clear and clean,” said Shiao.

Shiao said when it raised the money, the CCBA only accepted checks. And the organization has records of all donors’ names, addresses and bank accounts. Donors can now come to the office of the CCBA Monday through Friday, 10 am to 5 pm, to claim their money back. The donors have to be present in person, and claims from anyone other than the donor themselves won’t be accepted.  If the donor cannot be found, the money will be transferred to senior centers in Chinatown.

The money donated by the CCBA and its member organizations will be used to establish a scholarship for Chinese young people enrolled in law schools or the police academy to help encourage the younger generation to pursue careers in law and law enforcement.

In the end, Shiao offered Liang some well-thought-out advice. He said although the case has been over for a long time, Liang has not said “thank you” to the community at all. “The entire community was mobilized, and used our resources and energy to fight for the case. Now it is over and Liang just disappears without even a ‘thank you’ to the people,” said Shiao. “I suggest he learn some basic etiquette, and give the case a proper ending.”

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