Singer and actress Makiyo, who was involved in a dispute last week during which a cab driver was seriously injured, was released on bail yesterday after being summoned by Taipei prosecutors on Monday evening.
Two other Taiwanese actresses, A-tzu (ㄚ子) and Hsiang-ying (湘瑩), who were passengers in the taxi at the time of the altercation, were also summoned for questioning by prosecutors at the same time and released without bail.
Makiyo, who is of Japanese and Taiwanese descent, was released on NT$30,000 bail at 2:30am yesterday.
The three actresses bowed and apologized tearfully as they left the Taipei District Prosecutors’ Office together.
Taipei District Prosecutors’ Office spokesman Huang Mo-hsin (黃謀信) said Makiyo was suspected of kicking the taxi during the dispute and that she could be charged with damage to personal property and aggravated assault.
Takateru Tomoyori, a friend of Makiyo, was arrested on Friday after allegedly attacking the taxi driver, surnamed Lin (林), who sustained serious head injuries, two fractured ribs and a concussion.
The taxi driver remains in intensive care.
Tomoyori was released on NT$50,000 bail and has been barred from leaving the country.
Media have reported that the incident occurred after Lin asked Tomoyori and the other passengers to buckle their seatbelts, which they allegedly refused to do.
Makiyo held a press conference with Tomoyori on Saturday, where she said they had worn their seatbelts, but that the taxi driver had fondled her when returning change for the fare.
It was at that point that Tomoyori hit Lin, Makiyo said.
Lin’s family has since denied claims of sexual harassment, saying that Makiyo did not even pay the taxi fare, let alone have any change returned to her.
Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) Taipei City Councilor Lai Su-ju (賴素如) held a press conference on behalf of Lin’s family yesterday, saying Lin’s family and prosecutors had both indicated that as they were leaving the taxi, Hsiang-ying, who was in the front seat, tried to pay the taxi fare, but was stopped by Makiyo.
Lai said Lin’s cellphone records showed he made a 110 phone call asking for help during the dispute, saying he was being hit, but Tomoyori reportedly took his cellphone away in mid-conversation.
Police said Makiyo’s claim that Tomoyori hit Lin to protect her was questionable given that several passersby had witnessed the incident and said the taxi driver did not fight back when Tomoyori knocked him to the ground.
Tomoyori and his three companions then took another taxi, leaving the injured Lin lying on the ground, police said, adding that they suspected the four passengers were drunk at the time.