Thu, May 04, 2006 - Page 2 News List

Six avoid death penalty for murder of Aboriginal girls

By Rich Chang  /  STAFF REPORTER

The Hualien District Court yesterday sentenced a woman, her son and four others to life imprisonment for the murders of two Aboriginal girls, one of whom was the son's girlfriend.

"They committed a cruel crime, but because they confessed and have expressed their remorse, the court decides not to sentence them to death," the court ruling said.

The ruling said 20-year-old Kao Lu-you (郭律佑) was the boyfriend of a 15-year-old surnamed Chen and that Kao and his mother Lin Li-er (林麗娥) were angry with Chen after her father accused Kao of having sex with his daughter.

Kao's family paid the Chen family NT$100,000 to settle the lawsuit for under-age sex out of court, but Kao was incensed when he received a court order summoning him to stand trial for statutory rape, the ruling said, and so Lin and her son decided to murder the girl.

All cases of statutory rape must be referred to prosecutors.

Last December Kao asked Chen to meet him to discuss the case. She appeared with a friend of hers, a 12-year-old girl surnamed Lee, who became the second victim.

According to the ruling, Kao gave the girls drinks laced with a powdered sedative and asked them to accompany him to a dike near Hualien City.

The ruling said Lin and the four other defendants were waiting at the dike and they beat the two girls to death there.

The group then carried the bodies by motorscooter to a bridge in Hsiulin Township (秀林), Hualien County, took the girl's clothes off and threw the bodies off the bridge, the ruling said.

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