Sat, Jan 11, 2014 - Page 3 News List

Man who threw tapioca at elderly person apologizes

By Jake Chung  /  Staff writer, with CNA

A man who was filmed throwing a piece of tapioca at an elderly person while he occupied three seats on a train yesterday offered his apologies after netizens discovered his true identity.

The man, surnamed Chen (陳), is an employee of a maintenance company contracted by the Taiwan Rail Administration.

Chen was on a train bound for Taipei on Wednesday and sat down in the priority seat — which can seat three people — and placed his luggage beside him.

When asked by an elderly passenger to let others sit down, Chen refused and threw tapioca at the man from the drink in his hand.

The exchange was recorded by passengers on the same train and posted on the Internet soon after, with local TV stations repeatedly playing the clips on their news channels.

The elderly man was identified as Central Police University professor Lin Mao-hsiung (林茂雄).

Netizens started a campaign to find Chen and “bring him to justice.”

Chen appeared yesterday and made a public apology in front of reporters, saying that he wished he could apologize to Lin in person.

The company he worked for has also suspended him, saying he tarnished its image.

Lin, who has studied under US forensic scientist Henry Lee (李昌鈺), said on Thursday that the whole affair was a minor incident, adding that he had not known that it was recorded until students called him and told him about it.

Additional reporting by Lin Chia-chi and Cheng Shu-ting

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