Hong Konger Chan Tong-kai (陳同佳), who is suspected of murdering his girlfriend in Taiwan last year before fleeing back to Hong Kong, reportedly said that he would be willing to “turn himself in” to Taiwanese authorities once released from jail in Hong Kong next week, but asked that he not be given the death penalty.
The comments by Chan, who is wanted in Taiwan for allegedly strangling his pregnant girlfriend, Poon Hiu-wing (潘曉穎), and dumping her body on the outskirts of Taipei, were reported by Hong Kong’s Sing Tao Daily yesterday.
Chan is serving a short jail sentence in Hong Kong on a money laundering charge related to his theft of Poon’s possessions.
Photo: Screen grab from Facebook
Peter Koon (管浩鳴), an Anglican clergyman, has visited him regularly in prison and said that Chan was willing to hand himself over to Taiwanese authorities.
“I believe he will keep his word,” Koon told reporters, adding that Chan had consulted a team of Taiwanese lawyers and had converted to Christianity in prison.
“He expressed great regret for the victim’s family and he was very sorry for causing such trouble in Hong Kong,” Koon added, calling Chan’s decision “brave.”
The case was used by the Hong Kong government as justification for an ill-fated extradition bill, which would have allowed the territory to extradite suspects on a case-by-case basis to Taiwan and Macau, as well as mainland China.
The bill sparked weeks of protests, which have taken on a wider pro-democracy agenda and have involved regular clashes with police.
Taiwan maintains the death penalty for murder, but Koon said that Chan was unlikely to face execution if he surrendered voluntarily.
During his trial in April, he did not dispute murdering Poon. He is due to be released on Wednesday next week.
The Mainland Affairs Council yesterday called on the Hong Kong government to push for Chan to be prosecuted for murder, adding that it would, on the basis of equal status and mutual respect, provide evidence of Chan’s crime in Taiwan to Hong Kong authorities.
Hong Kong’s Chinese-language Ming Pao yesterday quoted the Hong Kong Security Bureau as saying that there is no legal basis for Hong Kong to extradite Chan to Taiwan.
The bureau declined to comment on whether it has information that Chan allegedly planned the murder in Hong Kong before traveling with Poon to Taiwan last year and on whether it would prosecute Chan.
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