Two owners sentenced
The owners of two food companies involved in a tainted food scandal earlier this year were given jail sentences and fines for purposely providing false information to health authorities, the Taichung District Court said yesterday. According to the court ruling, Chen Chun-jan (陳俊然) purchased a total of 1,500kg of plasticizers from major supplier Yu Shen Chemical Co in March with assistance from Chan Tse-yuan (詹澤遠). Chen then used the plasticizers as a cheaper alternative for clouding agent, the ruling said. As a nationwide crackdown on retailers involved in the scandal began at the end of May, Chen used another identity to cheat the authorities by telling investigators he bought the plasticizers from a biotech company, the court said, adding that Chen asked Chan and the accountant of his company to provide false purchase orders and related information. Chen, who did not inform his customers even after he realized the toxic nature of the plasticizers, was sentenced to two years in prison and fined NT$1.2 million (US$39,900), while Chan was given a seven-month sentence and fined NT$20,000, the court said.
Sun Yat-sen to be animated
Corporate representatives from Taiwan and Japan signed a memorandum of understanding yesterday to make the first 3D animation film about the founding father of the Republic of China (ROC) Sun Yat-sen (孫逸仙). The animated feature will be produced by Taiwan-based Studio 2 Animation Lab with technical support from Japanese broadcaster TV Tokyo Holdings Corp and special effects developer Shirogumi Inc, the Institute for Information Industry said. The production of the film, scheduled to be aired in Taiwan and China in October next year, will also involve three Chinese partners, the institute said. The participants also plan to form a “Sun Yat-sen Alliance” to shoot a series of TV dramas and movies in the future, the institute added.
Japanese say thanks
Japanese private groups are giving away 5,000 T-shirts they made as a gesture to thank Taiwan for its aid and generous donations in the wake of the powerful earthquake that hit Japan in March, a visiting Japanese lawmaker said yesterday. New Renaissance Party founder Yoichi Masuzoe, who is in Taiwan on a four-day visit that ends tomorrow, said the non-governmental groups decided to make the shirts in gratitude of Taiwanese for their help in the aftermath of the earthquake. Designed by a Japanese illustrator, the T-shirts feature Chinese characters expressing thanks and a heart-shaped icon showing the close relationship between the two countries. The shirts are being distributed to the public at travel agencies in Japan and Masuzoe said “we hope Japanese visitors to Taiwan will wear them during their stays in the country.”
Yushan lobbying intensifies
Taiwan has stepped up its lobbying efforts for online voters to pick Yushan (玉山), also known as Jade Mountain, as one of the “New 7 Wonders of Nature” in the final stage of the competition. The Yushan National Park Headquarters has been sending out e-mails, urging people to vote for Yushan on the Web site http://n7w.ysnp.gov.tw before the poll ends on Nov. 11. “This is now the crucial phase,” headquarters director Yu Deng-liang (游登良) said. Yushan, located in central Taiwan, is the highest mountain in East Asia. It is one of the 28 finalists in the four-stage contest that began three years ago.
DOING ENOUGH? The HPA budgets NT$1.3 billion to prevent the health hazards of tobacco, but has no separate budget to fight teen drinking, a doctor said The government should step up alcohol education and prevention efforts, and allocate more of the budget to it, doctors said on Friday, citing the high consumption of alcohol among Taiwanese adolescents. One out of four 12-to-17-year-olds has consumed alcohol, said Yen Tsung-hai (顏宗海), director of Linkou Chang Gung Memorial Hospital’s Department of Clinical Toxicology. The Health Promotion Administration (HPA) budgets NT$1.3 billion (US$43.9 million) annually to prevent the health hazards of tobacco, but it has not allocated a separate budget for preventing teenage drinking or excessive alcohol use, Yen said. “There is no so-called ‘safe drinking level’ for minors,” because any amount consumed
The Fancy Frontier manga and anime expo held in Taipei over the weekend has sparked controversy, after a participant allegedly contravened the Act on Offenses Against Sexual Morality (妨害風化罪) by publicly exposing her private parts during a photo shoot. The two-day event opened at the Expo Dome at the Taipei Expo Park on Saturday, attracting numerous comic and anime creators, cosplayers, photographers and fans. Allegedly, a female cosplayer who was not wearing any underwear lifted up her skirt and revealed her private parts at an outdoor photography area near the venue. Event organizers said yesterday that to prevent indecent exposure, they have since
DREAMING OF TRAVEL: About 7,000 people applied for the experience, with about 60 chosen for the first flight yesterday, which includes boarding an airplane Starved of the travel experience during COVID-19? Taipei International Airport (Songshan airport) has the solution — a fake itinerary where you check in, go through passport control and security, and even board the aircraft. You just never leave. The airport yesterday began offering travelers the chance to do just that, with about 60 people eager to get going, albeit to nowhere. About 7,000 people applied to take part, with the winners chosen by random. More fake flight experiences are to take place in the coming weeks. “I really want to leave the country, but because of the pandemic, lots of flights cannot fly,”
YOUNGEST PATIENT: Cases of botulism have been only sporadically reported over the past few years, with two in 2015, six in 2016 and none in the past three years The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) yesterday reported the nation’s first case of infant botulism this year, a four-month-old boy in northern Taiwan, as well as five new cases of Japanese encephalitis confirmed last week. The boy was introduced to homemade solid food in the middle of last month, but began to experience constipation and loss of appetite on June 23, CDC Epidemic Intelligence Center Deputy Director Guo Hung-wei (郭宏偉) said, adding that he was taken to the hospital when he developed a fever and shortness of breath on June 25. In the hospital, the boy also experienced a rapid heartbeat, limb