Thu, Jan 20, 2011 - Page 2 News List

Shooting suspect sentenced

By Rich Chang  /  Staff Reporter

Seventeen-year-old Liao Kuo-hao (廖國豪) was yesterday sentenced to a combined 25 years in prison for his role in two murders, including the high-profile shooting in Taichung of alleged gangland kingpin Weng Chi-nan (翁奇楠) in May.

Liao was given eight years for attempted murder for an attack on a restaurant owner in Taichung in 2009, according to the juvenile tribunal of the Taichung District Court.

In the Weng case, Liao was sentenced to 15 years for killing the gangster and 14 years for killing Weng’s friend, Lai Jung-chen (賴榮振).

The sentences for the three cases were combined for a total of 25 years.

The court said Liao was given a lighter sentence because he was under the age of 18 when he committed the murders.

Liao may appeal the ruling to the Taiwan High Court’s Taichung branch, the ruling said.

Liao, a junior-high-school dropout, turned himself in late in August. He allegedly shot Weng on May 28 at point-blank range because he was “really unhappy” that Weng had failed to pay him a NT$4 million (US$130,000) “hitman fee” following a botched attempt on the life of the local restaurant owner.

Liao, with the assistance of gangster Yang Ding-jung (楊定融), who prosecutors suspect of having orchestrated the assassination, had planned the murder days in advance.

Yang was arrested at Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport in June after being deported from Xiamen, China.

The murder shook the city’s police authorities after it was discovered that four Taichung City police officers were playing mahjong with Weng when the shooting occurred, suggesting close ties between the gangster and Taichung police.

ADDITIONAL REPORTING BY CNA

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