Prosecutors monitor games
Tainan City prosecutors will begin to monitor professional baseball games today in a bid to prevent match fixing. Seventeen prosecutors will take turns in leading local police in monitoring the games and collecting evidence if they think there are signs of rigging, said Lin Chih-feng (林志峰), a chief prosecutor. However, only games at the baseball stadiums in Tainan will be monitored, Lin said. Professional baseball game rigging and underground gambling have been rampant in the past two decades since the Chinese Professional Baseball League was launched in 1990. Over the years, several coaches and players have been detained and indicted for match fixing.
Cyclists bike for Yushan
In the latest twist to an ongoing campaign to get Yushan listed as one of the world's seven natural wonders, 24 cyclists from around the country are biking on the country's tallest mountain. Yushan National Park Headquarters said the cyclists began the tour on Wednesday and were expected to complete the 185km route today. Park officials said they hoped the cyclists' enthusiasm, energy and spirit of embracing challenges would rub off on the public. Each of the cyclists are wearing a vest printed with the slogan “Vote for Yushan.” Yushan is currently in first place in the “mountains and volcanoes” category in the contest to select the world's new seven natural wonders organized by the Swiss-based New7Wonders Foundation. To boost Yushan's chances of being selected, the national park headquarters urged the public to cast their vote for the mountain by visiting the Web site http://www.new7wonders.com.
Jilted woman finds no light
A jilted woman who attempted to set herself on fire in front of the Taipei World Trade Center early yesterday was frustrated to find that she had forgotten to bring a lighter or a match, a local TV station reported. After dousing herself with gasoline, the unidentified woman searched her handbag only to find that she had forgotten to bring a lighter, cable news network TVBS said. The gasoline-soaked woman then went to the parking lot of the trade center to try to borrow a lighter from a guard, who became suspicious of her intentions and instead called police. The woman later told police she was dumped by her boyfriend and she wanted to end her life. The woman was later taken home by her family, TVBS said.
Dogs help drug crackdown
Sniffer dogs have become more important in detecting illegal narcotics at customs checkpoints, detecting some 20 percent of the illegal drugs confiscated from travelers at Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport in the first quarter, the Customs Office said. More than 90kg of unlawful drugs smuggled in by passengers was confiscated at the airport in the first three months of this year, with about 20 percent of the drugs discovered by dogs serving at the airport, the officials said. Taiwan's drug sniffer dogs squad was established in 2002 to help customs agents crack down on smuggling of illegal substances. Six sniffer dogs are serving at the Taoyuan airport. Besides the work of the dogs, a majority — or 67 percent — of the banned drugs seized was discovered by customs agents with the help of X-ray machines, while the remaining 13 percent was tracked down through tip-offs, the Customs Office said.