A case in which an extra-marital affair was exposed by biology class material was won by the husband, with the cheating wife ordered to pay NT$3.2 million (US$109,000) in compensation, the Taipei District Court said in a ruling on Friday.
The ruling was not final and the woman, surnamed Wu (吳), said that she would decide whether to appeal the ruling after she had received the court notice.
The incident arose last March when the husband, surnamed Wang (王), and his then 14-year- old son, who has growth hormone deficiency, had been reviewing a chapter on genetics in his son’s biology textbook. Wang’s son realized that it was impossible for Wang — who has type AB blood — to be his biological father, because he has type O blood.
Wang took his son for a DNA test and discovered that his son and daughter, who was 21 years old at the time, were not his biological children.
Wang filed for divorce and disowned his son and daughter last year, with Wu having to pay NT$1 million to Wang.
Wang then decided to sue Wu this year for unjust enrichment, arguing that he had essentially wasted the prime years of his life caring for someone else’s offspring and asking for NT$9.2 million in damages.
According to the ruling, Wang had been in a high-level position at his company when he learned of his son’s disease, and he quit his job so he could care for his child.
Wang knew that his son would suffer discrimination due to his condition and accompanied his son to his school functions, as well as often taking him out in public.
“This happened after I was wed to Wu for barely two years, destroying my family and causing its members to suffer the shame of social scrutiny,” Wang said in a court testimony, adding that Wu should be held responsible.
Wang’s son — now in his third year of junior high school — said that he was very thankful for his father’s care, adding: “I know my own strengths and I don’t care too much what others think of me.”
Meanwhile, Wu denied Wang’s charges and said that Wang had an affair with his secretary, was addicted to majhong and had not contributed financially to the family.
“I shouldered the entire cost of the children’s living expenses and tuition fees,” she said.
Wu also alleged that Wang had borrowed NT$500,000 from a colleague and that she had to repay the colleague, adding that her monthly wages amounted to only NT$40,000. She asked the judge to decrease the damages.
However, after the judge summoned the daughter and son for testimony, the daughter said that all expenses — gas, electricity, rent and cram school fees — had been paid out of Wang’s pocket.
He often had to borrow money from relatives, she said, adding that after selling the house for NT$5 million six years ago to repay all the debts, the family had been living off what was left from the sale of the house.
The court ruled on Friday that aside from the NT$1 million Wu had to pay Wang in the divorce settlement, she should also compensate Wang NT$3.2 million for profiting unjustly from him, making the total amount of compensation, should the ruling become final, NT$4.2 million.
Reporters from the Liberty Times (the Taipei Times’ sister paper) called Wang and his lawyer, but were unable to reach either for comment.
Wu declined an interview and said through her lawyer that the case was not something she was proud of and that she just wanted to live her life in peace.