The Taipei District Court yesterday granted bail to Chen Yu-ta (陳友達), who is accused of being the organizer of an attack on Hong Kong singer and democracy advocate Denise Ho (何韻詩) at a rally in Taipei on Sunday, while police detained more people for questioning, bringing to 11 the number of suspects in the case.
Chen, 54, an executive member of the Dachen Nostalgia Culture Association (大陳島鄉情文化促進會), and the other 10 suspects in the case have ties to or are members of the Chinese Unification Promotion Party (CUPP), the Criminal Investigation Division (CID) of the Taipei Police Department said.
The suspects are facing charges of intimidation, public insult, damaging personal property, and contravening the Organized Crime Prevention Act (組織犯罪防制條例) and the Assembly and Parade Act (集會遊行法).
After being questioned by Taipei prosecutors yesterday, Chen was released after posting bail of NT$150,000.
He has been accused of planning the attack on Ho. As she spoke to reporters at the start of the rally, two assailants doused her with red paint.
The two alleged assailants are CUPP member Hu Chih-wei (胡志偉) and Dachen Nostalgia Culture Association member Liang Tai-fu (梁太富), both of whom were detained while trying to flee the scene and turned over to police.
Denying an application by prosecutors for the duo to be placed in detention, a judge on Monday released Hu and Liang on bail of NT$200,000 and NT$100,000 respectively.
Prosecutors yesterday submitted a second application for the duo’s detention.
Of the others taken in for questioning, Liao Jung-hua (廖榮華) and Chiu Hsiang-lin (邱翔琳) were released on NT$50,000 bail, while the other suspects were released on bail of NT$10,000 to NT$30,000.
Preliminary investigations indicated that Chen had convened a meeting in New Taipei City to plan the attack on Ho, at which the accused discussed setting up several “ambush points” with teams of two to three people, CID officials said.
Besides Hu and Liang, officials said seized videos showed that Chen had assigned two other “action teams” with balloons full of “foul waste liquid” to throw at Ho, they said.
Chen also designated “observer teams” to monitor the situation, along with an “escort team” to facilitate the teams’ escape and to protect them from the crowd, they added.
“Some people are taking to violence to damage Taiwan’s democracy, freedom and open society. They act as proxy agents for China. This is not right and they must be prosecuted to the full extent of the law,” Premier Su Tseng-chang (蘇貞昌) said at the legislature in Taipei yesterday when asked about the case by Democratic Progressive Party Legislator Lee Chun-yi (李俊俋).
“They were acting on behalf of China for the eventual goal of annexing Taiwan. I urge the justice system to be aware of society’s expectations and where the bottom line is,” Su added.
The National Police Agency issued a statement calling on the justice system to deal with suspects with the proper application of the law, due to the incident having repercussions for public safety.
Ho vowed that she would not back down to China’s intimidation, adding that she would take legal action against the suspects for intimidation, public humiliation and damage to property, to prevent similar harassment and threats happening to others.
The CUPP yesterday held a rally in front of Taipei Railway Station to mark China’s National Day.
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