Train bombing suspect making strong recovery

SUICIDAL BOMBER?:There is speculation the man might have rigged a mechanism using acid in the pipe bomb so that it would self-detonate later

By Jason Pan  /  Staff reporter

Mon, Jul 11, 2016 - Page 3

Doctors yesterday said that Lin Ying-chang (林英昌), the man suspected of detonating a homemade pipe bomb on a commuter train in Taipei on Thursday, has made a strong recovery after regaining consciousness on Saturday, and should be able to talk soon, with police investigators scheduled to question him today.

“The patient continued to improve, and he is now in a stable condition,” Taipei Medical University Hospital deputy superintendent Huang Tsung-jen (黃聰仁) said.

“He was treated for second and third-degree burns on both hands, and still requires a ventilator. However, we expect to be able to remove the intubation so he can talk to police on Monday,” Huang added.

Medical staff said Lin can hear and has opened his eyes, but mainly stares at the ceiling without speaking.

As Lin is the main suspect in the bombing, authorities have assigned a police team to his ward to watch him around the clock.

Officials from the Criminal Investigation Bureau (CIB) said that they have completed evidence-gathering and analysis, and they only needed to question Lin and take his statement before moving on to the next phase of judicial proceedings.

CIB investigators want to talk to Lin regarding his motives and other details of the case, and to clarify a number of questions.

Among the most important questions for investigators is whether Lin intended to commit suicide, or was trying to blow up the train carriage and kill other passengers, and also whether the homemade bomb exploded prematurely.

There is speculation that Lin might have rigged a mechanism using acid in the pipe bomb so that it would self-detonate later on, as the commuter train was to make scheduled stops on its way to Keelung.

Investigators also plan to question Lin on whether he had intended to make a second bomb, packed with shrapnel.

That suspicion arose due to materials found in Lin’s van, which he abandoned in Nantou County’s Wushe (霧社). The police located the vehicle on Friday.

CIB officers said they recovered tools, duct tape, a metal pipe, detonating fuse, sharp metal pieces made from cutting up steel chopsticks and other materials, which they said was sufficient to make a second bomb.

Investigators also found a bottle of paraquat, a liquid pesticide used by farmers as a weed killer, but potent enough to kill a person, which led investigators to suspect Lin had planned to kill himself.

Investigators said that Lin might have wanted to commit suicide after suffering from tonsil cancer and mental illness, and that he had left a suicide note in the van asking his family to pay off his credit card debts and to arrange his funeral.