Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) Legislator Chiu Yi-ying (邱議瑩) was sentenced to 30 days in jail yesterday for “slapping” Chinese Nationality Party (KMT) Legislator Lee Ching-hua (李慶華) in the face during a cross-strait negotiation briefing to the legislature on April 22 last year.
The Taiwan High Court said Chiu had insulted Lee by “slapping” his face in public at the legislature.
However, Chiu can pay a NT$30,000 fine instead of serving time in jail. The sentence is final.
Lee filed suit against Chiu accusing her of “insulting” him during a meeting of the legislature’s Internal Administration Committee meeting.
The committee had invited Straits Exchange Foundation (SEF) Chairman Chiang Pin-kung (江丙坤) to brief it ahead of the third round of cross-strait talks.
Legislators scuffled when Lee said that instead of criticizing Chiang for failing to show up, the DPP should have condemned the heads of the SEF under the DPP administration for failing to report to the committee. Lee and Chiu got into a shouting match after Lee asked Chiu not to interrupt him and “show some manners.”
Chiu later “slapped” Lee in the face after he challenged her to hit him and called her a “shrew.”
The Taipei District Court found Chiu guilty in the first trial, fining her NT$10,000, which could be converted to a work sentence.
She appealed, denying she had intended to insult Lee in public. She said she had simply “gently touched” Lee’s face because he had called her a shrew.
Chiu yesterday said she would rather serve the 30-day sentence than pay a fine, adding that the judicial system was unreasonable.
Although she had yet to see the official ruling, she said she would not appeal.
“Our legal system is dead. I would rather be locked up to show how ridiculous and laughable this court ruling is,” she said.
She said it was unfair that Lee was acquitted of insulting her by saying she “lacked manners.”
“It was an insult and women should not have to put up with being subject to this by men. I acted properly to defend myself,” she said. “Do women deserve to be bullied by men?”
Lee said in a text message to reporters that he hoped Chiu would refrain from “hitting other people or giving others the finger” in future.
He told reporters later yesterday that he hoped Chiu would keep her promise to go to jail instead of paying a fine.
ADDITIONAL REPORTING BY VINCENT Y. CHAO
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