Sat, Jul 19, 2008 - Page 3 News List

Taiwan News Quick Take

STAFF WRITER, WITH AGENCIES

■ WILDLIFE

Koala found dead at zoo

Ligi (麗琪), an 11-year-old koala bear at Taipei Zoo, died yesterday afternoon. Taipei Zoo director Jason Yeh (葉傑生) said tumors were found in her liver and spleen during a regular checkup in April. Yeh said Ligi was found dead at 4pm yesterday. The zoo will organize an online memorial ceremony for the koala on the zoo’s Web site soon. The female koala bear was sent to Taipei by an Australian sanctuary in 2001 and gave birth in 2003 and 2005. There are six koala bears at the zoo now, Yeh said. The zoo had to euthanize another koala, named Harley, in 2004 after a tumor was found in his nose.

■ CRIME

Fake yuan men arrested

Investigators arrested two men in Kaohsiung City for possessing counterfeit Chinese currency which they used while posing as Chinese tourists, the Criminal Investigation Bureau (CIB) said yesterday. The investigators said the two con artists, surnamed Chen and Yang, made small purchases with the counterfeit bills at tourist attractions around Taiwan — including Kaohsiung’s Love River, Kenting National Park, Sun Moon Lake and Alishan. Chen and Yang admitted to posing as Chinese tourists by faking Chinese accents. Acting on a tip-off, investigators raided an apartment building in the city’s Zuoying District on Thursday afternoon, arresting the two men. Kaohsiung police joined the raid. According to the CIB, the investigators found 6,500 yuan (US$950) of fake Chinese money at the apartment, small bags of amphetamines and some electronic scales. Investigators handed over the suspects to the Kaohsiung District Prosecutors’ Office for questioning. The CIB is now tracing the source of the bogus Chinese currency.

■ SOCIETY

Students get free rides

Taiwan High Speed Rail Corp offered free rides yesterday to a team from a National Taiwan University (NTU) social service club dedicated to autistic children. The sponsorship is part of the company’s efforts to encourage local university students and private groups to travel to remote areas of the country to provide charity services or to help disadvantaged children, said a company public affairs officer. Under the program, the company offered club members 86 free round-trip train tickets worth in excess of NT$60,000. The NTU club’s 40-plus-member team, including 15 autistic children, left Taipei City for Taichung City for a three-day visit, said Yang Chao-chun (楊朝鈞), head of the university group. The club holds outdoor activities every year to help autistic children explore the world and meet people, Yang said.

■ SOCIETY

Puppies arrive from Japan

A first batch of puppies from Japan arrived in Taiwan on Thursday to be trained as guide dogs, a domestic guide dog association said. The four puppies, which were originally owned by a guide dog school in Hokkaido were brought to Taiwan by the Taiwan Guide Dog Association. As part of the group’s activities, local families are encouraged to take part in a puppy walker program to provide loving homes for the puppies until they are between 10 months old and 12 months old and eligible to enter the association’s training program, the association said. Taiwan has welcomed guide dogs and puppies to be trained as guide dogs from Japan and the US, which have signed cooperative agreements in canine disease prevention and control with Taiwan, according to the association. At present, Taiwan has only 24 qualified guide dogs for some 60,000 visually impaired individuals.

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