Sat, Jan 28, 2006 - Page 2 News List

Chiu arrest described as `a joke'

EXCESSIVE?Lawmakers from all parties agreed that the arrest of KMT Legislator Chiu Yi was farcical as it involved the services of hundreds of policeman

By Jimmy Chuang  /  STAFF REPORTER

Over 100 police officers eat lunch yesterday in front of the Kaohsiung District Court. They were sent to maintain order at the time of KMT Legislator Chiu Yi's arrest.

PHOTO: HUANG CHIH-YUAN, TAIPEI TIMES

Democratic Progressive Party (DPP), Taiwan Solidarity Union (TSU) and People First Party (PFP) lawmakers were united yesterday in describing the arrest of Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) Legislator Chiu Yi (邱毅) as "a joke," while KMT members questioned the legitimacy of the arrest.

"There was nothing to suggest that Chiu would try to escape, so it really wasn't necessary for the police to put on such a performance on Thursday night," said PFP Legislator Lin Hui-kuan (林惠官).

Lin said that the police should make better use of their manpower instead of focusing on a single subject who is not a flight risk.

Stage-managed?

TSU Legislator Ho Min-hao (何敏豪) insinuated that Chiu might have stage-managed the situation in order to garner public attention as he is planning to run for Kaohsiung mayor at the end of the year.

"For a defendant of this sort, I don't think it was necessary for so many police officers to be at the scene, really," Ho said.

The DPP's Yeh Yi-chin (葉宜津) described the arrest as a "drama" and echoed Ho's sentiments about the abuse of police manpower.

KMT Caucus Whip Pan Wei-kang (潘維剛) questioned the legitimacy of Chiu's arrest.

"The Code of Criminal Procedure states that a person can be arrested when he has ignored at least three summons from the court, but it does not stipulate that this is necessary," Pan said. "At least, Chiu is one of us and deserves some respect as a lawmaker."

Chiu, who has ignored several court subpoenas since 2004, gained notoriety after he was shown on national TV, standing in a truck and apparently exhorting a mob to storm a court building.

Chiu claimed that he requested leave of absences each time he was summoned, but that these were rejected by the Kaohsiung District Court.

The Taipei City Police Department directed members of its Chungcheng First Precinct to carry out the arrest at TVBS, a local cable TV station, where Chiu was participating in a talk show. Chiu was handcuffed as he left the TV station at about 10pm and escorted to Kaohsiung.

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