Fri, Oct 29, 2004 - Page 2 News List

Infamous suspect Chang admits to killing woman

DEJA VU After being found guilty, and then innocent of involvement in a 1997 murder, Chang Chih-hui recently turned himself in after strangling his girlfriend

By Jimmy Chuang  /  STAFF REPORTER

Chang Chih-hui (張志輝), a former suspect in the murder of Pai Hsiao-yen (白曉燕), the 17-year-old daughter of TV entertainer Pai Ping-ping (白冰冰) allegedly murdered his girlfriend on Wednesday and turned himself in around the midnight yesterday.

According to police, the incident began on Wednesday afternoon when Chang broke into his girlfriend's residence in Yangmei Township, Taoyuan County. The victim was identified only as Chiu. Chang told the police he wanted to kill Chiu because she recently fell in love with another man wanted to break up.

According to police, when Chang broke into the house, he discovered Chiu asleep. Chang asked her for sex but she refused. He then strangled her.

After killing his girlfriend, Chang dressed the body and loaded it into her car, which was parked nearby. Chang placed Chiu's body in the driver's seat and fled the scene, police said.

Later Wednesday evening Chiu called local cable TV station TVBS and told its news department that he had killed a man and wanted to turn himself in to the police. The station then alerted the police and sent a senior reporter to meet Chang at the pre-determined location: a night market in Chungli.

Chang told the reporter that he actually killed his girlfriend, not a man, and proceeded to show the reporter the body.

The reporter persuaded him to go to the police. Chang then reportedly drove the car containing Chiu's body to the National Police Agency's Criminal Investigation Bureau (CIB) around 2:30am yesterday.

Chang asked to report to the murder to CIB Commissioner Hou You-yi (侯友宜) personally.

Hou, however, refused to meet with the suspect.

"I do not know [Chang] and I will not compromise just because he requested to see me. Violators of the law are treated equally. They are not supposed to make any special requests," Hou said.

"We completed all necessary legal procedures according to our regulations," he added.

Chang's brother-in-law, Chen Chin-hsing (陳進興), was convicted for the murder and rape of Pai Hsiao-yen in 1997. Chen was sentenced to death for his crime, but Chang was found not guilty of murder in a trial in January 1998.

Chang was tried again in September 1998 in the Taiwan High Court and received a life sentence for murder. He appealed to the Supreme Court, where a retrial was ordered.

During his retrial by the same court in October 2001, Chang was found not guilty of murder and released, but put on monitored probation.

On behalf of Pai Ping-ping, prosecutors appealed to the Supreme Court and the High Court once again began to rehear the case on July 25 last year. Chang's third murder trial is pending.

According to the verdict in the second retrial, Chang was found innocent because there was not sufficient evidence against him, except for a confession he made during police interrogations. Police, however, have no physical evidence indicating Chang's guilt. According to the Code of Criminal Procedure (刑事訴訟法), a suspect's statement cannot be regarded as the only evidence used to prove a suspect's involvement in a crime.

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