Sun, Feb 12, 2012 - Page 1 News List

Police face charges in Makiyo case

UNSEEN EVIDENCE:The policemen in charge of the case against the singer-actress allegedly didn’t give prosecutors a video clip showing the alleged assault until it was on TV

By Rich Chang  /  Staff Reporter

Taipei prosecutors said yesterday they might charge Taipei police officers with concealment of offences, destruction of evidence and leaking confidential information while handling a case of alleged assault involving singer-actress Makiyo and a Japanese friend.

Taipei District Prosecutors’ Office spokesman Huang Mo-hsin (黃謀信) said yesterday that prosecutors would soon question Xinyi precinct police officers Wu Teng-chieh (吳登傑) and Yeh Hung-sheng (葉鴻昇), who were in charge of Makiyo’s case, but apparently failed to include an important video clip in the evidence package given to prosecutors on Feb. 3.

Their supervisors would also be questioned, Huang added.

The video clip, taken by a taxi driver using a dashboard camera in his car, seems to show Makiyo shouting at a taxi driver and kicking him before being stopped by her Japanese friend, Takateru Tomoyori.

Xinyi precinct did not present the video clip to the prosecutors until the prosecutors saw the footage on TV on Wednesday and demanded the tape from the department, prosecutors said.

According to Hung, head of Xinyi precinct’s Sanchangli police station, Yang Kuo-chang (楊國昌) had admitted to the Taipei Police Station that he gave the video clip to an ETTV reporter and that footage taken from it was broadcast on TV.

Yang would face an investigation to determine if he leaked confidential information, Huang said.

The Taipei District Prosecutors’ Office on Friday announced it had indicted Makiyo and Tomoyori on charges of assault and asked for four and six years imprisonment respectively, over the alleged beating of the taxi driver on Feb. 2.

The incident reportedly occurred after the taxi driver, surnamed Lin (林), asked Tomoyori and the other passengers to fasten their seatbelts, which they allegedly refused to do. They then allegedly assaulted the taxi driver.

Lin, who sustained serious head injuries, two fractured ribs and a concussion, was still in hospital yesterday.

Makiyo, a Taiwan-based entertainer born to a Japanese father and Taiwanese mother, and Tomoyori have been prohibited from leaving the country.

Separately yesterday, Minister of the Interior Lee Hong-yun (李鴻源) said the police had been careless in their handling of the high-profile assault case.

“Honestly speaking, the police made some clear errors in processing the case,” Lee said, adding that the police made a “serious mistake” by waiting six days before submitting a video clip of the incident.

Describing the incident as “regretful,” Lee said there were some lessons to be learned, including the wrongfulness of violence and heavy drinking.

To avoid such mistakes from happening again, he urged more on-the-job training for police officers.

He also called for the enforcement of standard operating procedures in the police force.

Additional reporting by CNA

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