Thu, Apr 15, 2010 - Page 3 News List

Taiwan News Quick Take

STAFF WRITER, WITH AGENCIES

■ CRIME

Taxi killer sentenced

The Taiwan High Court yesterday sentenced a taxi driver to life in prison for killing his passenger after driving directly at the victim and sending him flying into the air. The court said 39-year-old Lin Yuan-sheng (林淵晟) killed the passenger and has not shown any remorse for his actions. The Taipei District Court had earlier sentenced Lin to life and the High Court upheld the ruling yesterday. Lin may appeal the verdict to the Supreme Court. On the morning of Oct. 20, Lin got into a heated argument with 51-year-old passenger Tu Tsan-hsiu (杜讚修) over whether the driver purposely took a longer route than necessary. Moments later, after Tu got out of the taxi on Taipei's Bade Road, the driver backed up his cab a short distance, waited for Tu to turn his back, then stepped on the accelerator and rammed the victim, sending him flying several meters into the air and killing him on the spot. The taxi driver turned himself in at Songshan Police Station a day later, but claimed he had “mistakenly stepped on the accelerator instead of the brake.”

■ TRAVEL

Bangkok alert downgraded

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs yesterday downgraded its travel alert for Bangkok to orange from red for Taiwanese planning to travel to Thailand. The ministry advised Taiwanese nationals to avoid going to Bangkok, Nonthaburi, Samut Prakan, Pathum Thani, Nakhon Pathom and Ayutthaya and if they must visit those areas, to remain vigilant. The downgrade came as the confrontation between the Thai government and protesters diminished. The ministry called on travelers to stay away from the hub areas surrounding the Phan Fah Bridge and Ratchaprasong, which are still occupied by protesters. Those who encounter an emergency situation in Thailand can dial a hotline operated by Taiwan's representative office in Thailand at 002-66-81-666-4006.

■ TRAVEL

Kaohsiung flights resume

Taipei-based TransAsia Airways will resume Taipei-Kaohsiung flights from May 1 for the convenience of southern Taiwan travelers who need to make transit stops at Taipei Songshan Airport during direct cross-strait flights, an airline spokesman said yesterday. Initially, the spokesman said, the carrier will offer one flight in each direction daily, using a 70-seater ATR-72 turboprop. The northbound flight will take off from Kaohsiung at 6:45am and will land at Taipei Songshan Airport at 7:45am, the spokesman said. The southbound flight will take off from Taipei at 8pm and is scheduled to arrive at Kaohsiung International airport at 9pm.

■ SOCIETY

Parlor accused of bribery

A funeral parlor allegedly bribed police officers and firefighters for tip-offs about sudden deaths to get an edge over the competition, local media reported yesterday. The Te Sheng Funeral Parlor in Taipei County is alleged to have paid up to NT$20,000 for tips, enabling it to be first to handle a body at the scene of a crime or an accident, local media reports said. Six police officers and firefighters face corruption charges and are likely to be jailed for at least seven years if convicted, the Chinese-language Apple Daily reported. It did not specify which charges may be brought against staff at the funeral parlor. Prosecutors investigating the case were not immediately available for comment.

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