The Taipei District Prosecutors’ Office yesterday indicted a woman for splashing red paint on a portrait of former president Lee Teng-hui (李登輝) at a public memorial service at the Taipei Guest House in August.
Cheng Hui-chung (鄭惠中), a veteran entertainer, was charged with interfering with a public memorial and could face a fine of up to NT$9,000 or up to six months in prison.
She was also charged with destruction of private property, which carries a fine of up to NT$15,000 or up to six months in prison, prosecutors said.
On Aug. 14, Cheng was caught hurling a balloon filled with red paint at Lee’s photograph at a public memorial service in honor of the late president, who had died on July 30.
Some of the paint also splattered nearby items, including a white pillar. She was immediately taken into custody by police.
Prosecutors said that the 68-year-old Cheng vandalized the photograph because she disagreed with Lee’s politics.
However, they said that Cheng would not be charged with breaches of the Cultural Heritage Preservation Act (文化資產保存法) because it is difficult to determine whether she intended to damage the pillar.
People charged with breaches of the act, such as vandalizing a historic building or affiliated facilities, could face a fine of up to NT$20 million and a jail sentence of up to five years.
In January last year, Cheng was detained and investigated for slapping then-minister of culture Cheng Li-chiun (鄭麗君) at a banquet for veteran entertainers.
She was charged with obstructing government administration, but that charge was dropped by prosecutors in July last year because it was considered a minor offense and the banquet was a private event.
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