Sat, Oct 15, 2011 - Page 2 News List

Students shaken by thief’s death

DRAMA IN DUBBO:Three Taiwanese on a working holiday program in Australia tackled an alleged thief, who went into shock and never regained consciousness

By Shih Hsiu-chuan  /  Staff Reporter

An alleged thief in Australia died shortly after being tackled by three Taiwanese students as he tried to burgle their home in New South Wales, but his death was not related to injuries sustained in the scuffle, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs said yesterday.

The incident happened at about 5pm on Wednesday in Dubbo, New South Wales, when the alleged robber broke into the house while the three students were at home, the ministry said.

The ministry said the thief went into shock after being tackled by the three Taiwanese students, and he did not regain consciousness after being given cardiopulmonary resuscitation in an ambulance on the way to hospital.

Australian police were called to the house by the students after they overpowered the thief, Ministry of Foreign Affairs spokesman James Chang (章計平) said, adding that the Taipei Economic and Cultural Office in Sydney had been in contact with police upon receiving a call from the students at 1am on Thursday.

The ministry’s overseas staff arrived at the students’ house at 11:50am yesterday, Chang said, brushing off an accusation reported in Chinese-language media that the representative office had been slow to offer assistance to the students.

Chang said after the incident, the three students were taken by police to a hotel for questioning in the company of their lawyer and a translator.

An autopsy performed on the ill-fated burglary suspect found that he died of causes unrelated to the scuffle that occurred when the students tackled him and the three Taiwanese were allowed to go free, Chang said.

The three students, aged between 20 and 25, are in Australia on a working holiday program.

Chang refused to divulge any further information regarding the victims to protect their privacy.

“Our nationals are now staying at a hotel because their house has been designated a crime scene,” Chang said.

Additional reporting by CNA

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