Fri, Sep 14, 2018 - Page 3 News List

Supreme Court upholds jail term for sword attacker

COLLATERAL DAMAGE:The attacker’s lawyer said he had not intended to hurt presidential guard Chou Shu-hung, whose face was left partially paralyzed

By Jason Pan  /  Staff reporter

The Supreme Court yesterday upheld a sentence of six years and eight months in prison for Lu Chun-yi (呂軍億), who attacked a military police officer outside the Presidential Office Building in Taipei in August last year.

The Taiwan High Court in a second ruling in July convicted Lu, 52, of attempted murder and illegally carrying a deadly weapon.

Lu and his lawyer filed an appeal with the Supreme Court, saying that the High Court’s sentence was excessive, because although Lu injured presidential guard Chou Shu-hung (周書鈜) with a sword, he had not intended to kill him.

On Aug. 18 last year, Lu tried to enter the Presidential Office Building through its west wing.

When Chou stopped him, Lu used a saber to strike Chou, who suffered cuts to his head and hands.

Other guards arrived and overpowered Lu.

Lu’s attack was likely politically motivated, as a suicide note and a People’s Republic of China flag were found in his backpack, prosecutors said.

Investigators said that Lu has supported unification with China and had written in an online post: “I want to pay my respect to the great chairman Mao Zedong (毛澤東).”

Investigators quoted Lu as saying during questioning that he planned to assassinate President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) by beheading her with the sword, and that he was prepared to attack anyone else if they tried to get in his way.”

It was later determined that Lu had stolen the sword from the nearby Armed Forces Museum on Guiyang Street by smashing a display case with a hammer.

The attack left Chou partially facially paralyzed because of severed nerves and he had to retire from service.

Chou filed a lawsuit against Lu, demanding NT$3 million (US$97,387) in compensation.

Chou at a hearing said that he had suffered psychological trauma because of the attack.

“When I see someone carrying a knife, I still get scared,” he said.

The Taipei District Court in July ruled that Lu must pay half of that amount, or NT$1.5 million.

The Supreme Court’s ruling is the final verdict in the case and cannot be appealed.

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