Lin Cheng-wei (林正偉) was convicted of the 2010 shooting of Sean Lien (連勝文) and another man and given 24 years in prison by the Banciao District Court in New Taipei City (新北市) yesterday, but the Banciao District Prosecutors’ Office said it would appeal the ruling.
Lin was found guilty of attempted murder and of violating the Statute Regulating Firearms, Ammunition, Knives and Other Deadly Weapons (槍砲彈藥刀械管制條例) for the shooting at an election rally on Nov. 26, 2010, the night before the special municipality elections.
Sean Lien, former Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) -chairman Lien Chan’s (連戰) son, was wounded in the cheek in the shooting and a man in the crowd, named Huang Yun-sheng (黃運聖), was hit by stray bullet and died.
Banciao District Prosecutors’ Office spokesperson Lee Hai-lung (李海龍) said the office felt Huang’s death warranted a murder charge instead of the involuntary manslaughter charge it was accorded in the court’s ruling.
The prosecutors concluded in January last year that as Lin could have foreseen that stray bullets might harm people in the crowd, but still went ahead with the shooting, his actions constituted murder with intent and he could be charged with murder.
The prosecutors indicted Lin on charges of murder and attempted manslaughter, and asked for the death penalty.
“We will appeal the sentence after we receive the official notification,” Lee said.
Sean Lien took to his Facebook page to comment on the verdict.
He said it was regrettable that despite the investigation and court proceedings, “there were still many suspicious points that had not been cleared up.”
There was no mention of Lin’s motive and goal, nor was there a ruling on who was actually the intended target, he said, while the source of the firearm and ammunition, as well as whether Lin had an accomplice or was acting under someone else’s orders, had not been clarified.
He said the possibility of Lin being paroled after serving several years of his sentence was disturbing because it would only serve to encourage others to use any means necessary to accomplish their goals.
He also said that such an incident, which had influenced the special municipality elections and was widely reported, could not be resolved by “people in charge spouting words about fairness and equality and expect them to serve as protection charms.”
“Such actions do not assuage the suspicions people have about the case, or restore the people’s trust in the government,” Sean Lien said.
Additional reporting by Peng Hsien-chun