Mon, Nov 01, 2004 - Page 4 News List

Henry Lee says report will be issued at the right time

STILL PENDING Lee, a US-based forensic scientist who already delivered his report on the March 19 presidential shooting, says more evidence is needed for the full report

CNA , LOS ANGELES

Taiwan's law enforcement agencies will make public the entire contents of the report regarding the March 19 shooting of President Chen Shui-bian (陳水扁) and Vice President Annette Lu (呂秀蓮) when they feel the time is right, US-based forensic scientist Henry Lee (李昌鈺) said on Saturday.

Report

Lee, who was asked by the government to help examine the attempted assassination site and the two bullets found there, delivered his report on Aug. 28.

Lee said he guesses that investigators have yet to make the report public because they themselves have not obtained enough evidence.

"If the report is publicized, it may scare away suspects or lead to further destruction of evidence," Lee said.

Lee led a team to Taiwan in April to examine Chen and Lu's wounds, inspect the scene of the shooting and tour the hospital where Chen and Lu were taken for medical treatment.

Lee made the remarks after delivering a speech on his life in the US in Rosemead, a city near Los Angeles, on Saturday.

He was asked by reporters his opinion on why Taiwan has not released the full results of his report more than two months after it was presented to State Public Prosecutor-General Ru Jen-fa (盧仁發) prior to Ru's retirement in September.

Lee also said that he suggested that an independent investigation committee be established to investigate into all matters surrounding the election-eve shooting.

Independent

He added that members of the independent investigation committee should come from parties across the political spectrum and all the material in the report should be reviewed by completely neutral individuals before further investigations begin.

Lee reiterated that the way to crack the shooting case is to find the gun, believed to be a remodeled handgun, or the underground gunsmith where the weapon was made, or find the gunman who fired the two shots.

He said that he arrived at the scene in Tainan on April 9, almost 20 days after the shooting and, therefore, had great difficulty in reconstructing the scene.

As a forensic expert, Lee said his job is to reconstruct the scene and find as many clues as possible, not to crack the case.

In his report, Lee shed no new light on the case, in which little headway has been made with no major leads and no arrests after seven months.

Cause

He said in the report that the president's injury to the abdomen was caused by a bullet and that the bullets retrieved were not used in regular handguns.

The most significant finding in his draft report was the special "tool marks" on a shell casing found at the scene. Lee suggested in the report that police continue to aggressively search for and seize all illegal firearms in the country and "examine and compare all the guns."

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