Tue, Feb 14, 2012 - Page 2 News List

Japanese national raises money for beaten taxi driver

Staff Writer, with CNA

A Japanese national who has lived in Taiwan for more than 15 years has started a fundraising campaign for a taxi driver allegedly attacked and beaten unconscious by half-Japanese actress Makiyo and a Japanese friend.

Naotsugu Yoshida, 34, who is a supervisor for the Hatta Yoichi Memorial Foundation for Culture and the Arts in Taiwan, said he felt ashamed about the incident and he hoped the money raised would help the injured driver and his family.

Yoshida said almost 200 Japanese expatriates in Taiwan have expressed their intention to donate to the fund and that he has raised about NT$100,000 so far.

He said he hopes to deliver the money to the driver in person.

Yoshida said many Japanese are angry about the incident and the attitude of the alleged offender, Takateru Tomoyori, because he has tried to defend his actions rather than apologize.

Tomoyori’s attempt in recent days to shoulder all the blame for Makiyo and two other women allegedly involved in the incident was also not a responsible way to handle the matter, Yoshida said.

Although the injured driver’s condition has improved, Yoshida said, Tomoyori and Makiyo should think about how to show sincere remorse and help with the driver’s medical care.

Asked about the media coverage since the incident on Feb. 2, Yoshida said the intense pursuit by the press helped reveal the truth about the alleged assault, adding that Makiyo and Tomoyori failed to provide honest accounts until the true nature of the attack was exposed.

Makiyo and Tomoyori were indicted on charges of “inflicting serious bodily harm” on the taxi driver by the Taipei District Prosecutors Office on Friday.

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