Following the recent murder of an 10-year-old boy by a man who allegedly killed him because he wanted to be imprisoned, lawmakers yesterday proposed amendments to the Criminal Code, including making the murder of children and the elderly punishable by death or life in prison, in a bid to deter such crimes.
The boy, surnamed Fang (方), was found dead with his throat cut at a children’s recreation center in Greater Tainan on Saturday.
Within 10 hours of the incident being reported, the police had tracked down a suspect, Tseng Wen-chin (曾文欽), a 29-year-old man who reportedly had been unemployed for a long time and heavily indebted.
Tseng said he killed the boy so that he could be sent to prison and that he had planned to kill more people had he not been arrested.
Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) Legislator Hsu Hsin-ying (徐欣瑩) put forward an amendment to the Criminal Code to equate the murder of children under the age of 12 and of adults above 65 with the murder of a family member in an offender’s direct line of descent, which is punishable by death or a life sentence.
Under Hsu’s amendment, the length of sentences to be imposed on offenders convicted of injuring or kidnapping a child under 12 years old or an adult above 65 would be increased by up to 50 percent.
Social attitudes have deteriorated to the point where “harsh punishment is needed as deterrent,” Hsu said, citing statistics showing that the total number of crimes against children and the elderly increased to 1,595 and 12,393 respectively last year from 100 and 8,701 in 2001.
KMT Legislator Lu Yu-ling (呂玉玲) proposed another amendment to the Criminal Code which suggested that a murderer be sentenced to death or life in prison for killing a child under the age of 14, which she said was to some extent modeled after a sex crime law in the US known as “Jessica’s Law” designed to track sex offenders more stringently.
Separately, the legislature yesterday approved an amendment to the Air Pollution Control Act (空氣污染防制法) that will allow the Environmental Protection Administration (EPA) to make exemptions when fining drivers who leave their cars idling for more than three minutes.
The EPA has said that it will exempt fines in certain cases, including on days when a maximum temperature of more than 30oC is forecast or when it is raining heavily.
The Supreme Court on Tuesday found four men guilty of attempted murder in the 2017 stabbing of Spanish surfer Ignacio Prio on a Pingtung County beach in the final ruling in the case, sentencing them to three-and-a-half to six years in prison. The defendants had appealed their convictions for attempted murder in the first and second rulings, which had also led to prison sentences ranging from three-and-a-half years to six years. The then-42-year-old Prio went to Jialeshui Beach (佳樂水) near Kenting (墾丁) on March 31, 2017, was attacked after he asked four men to remove their fishing lines from an area
‘IMMORAL, INSINCERE’: Huang Kun-huei said that Ma was ‘distorting history’ in claiming that Lee Teng-hui laid the foundation for the so-called ‘1992 consensus’ Former Presidential Office secretary-general Huang Kun-huei (黃昆輝) on Saturday rejected former president Ma Ying-jeou’s (馬英九) claim that former president Lee Teng-hui (李登輝) had been a proponent of Beijing’s “one China” principle. Lee, who served as president from 1988 to 2000, died in Taipei on Thursday last week. After visiting the Taipei Guest House on Saturday to pay his respects to Lee, Ma posted on Facebook that “28 years ago on this day” Lee hosted a session of the now-defunct National Unification Council, during which he passed a resolution on the “one China” principle. That resolution became the basis of the Chinese Nationalist Party’s
NEW ERA: Taiwan, which has controlled its virus outbreak, now faces the challenge of safely resuming economic exchanges with other nations, Chang Shan-chwen said People should not focus entirely on having zero new confirmed COVID-19 cases in Taiwan, but neglect overall control over the disease situation, Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC) specialist advisory panel convener Chang Shan-chwen (張上淳) said yesterday. Chang made the remark at a forum in Taipei discussing the steps Taiwan should take in the post-pandemic era, organized by the Chinese-language magazine Global Views Monthly. Chang, Centers for Disease Control (CDC) Director-General Chou Jih-haw (周志浩), and Stanford University’s Center for Policy, Outcomes and Prevention director C. Jason Wang (王智弘) each made a presentation, followed by a panel discussion with Chang, Wang and Buddhist Tzu
DIPLOMATIC MOVES: Beijing is reportedly pressing the state after reports of forming links with Taiwan, while the ministry is also planning to reopen its office in Guam soon A representative office is set to open in Somaliland at the end of this month, at the earliest, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA) said yesterday amid reports that Beijing is sending a diplomatic delegation to the east African country. The ministry on July 1 announced that Taiwan and Somaliland would establish representative offices, following a report by the Somaliland Chronicle Web site. It said at the time that the two nations did not plan to establish formal ties. Somaliland President Muse Bihi Abdi has instructed close confidants to explore the possibility of “mutual recognition between Taiwan and Somaliland,” the Somaliland Chronicle reported