A farmer in Miaoli County faces prosecution after finding a packet of seeds by the roadside, which he took home and planted, only to find that they produced cannabis plants, police said.
Police on Thursday quoted the farmer, surnamed Yeh (葉), who is in his 50s, as saying that, in February, he found a packet of seeds on the ground next to a garbage bin on a rural road branching off Provincial Highway No. 3 near his farm in Miaoli’s Dahu Township (大湖).
He had always had an interest in cultivating plants, and as he was curious about the unidentified seeds, he took them home and planted some, Yeh said in a recorded statement to the police.
Photo: Taipei Times file
After three months, he found that three of the seeds had sprouted, but because the seedlings grew gradually he did not know what they were at first, Yeh said, adding that he later thought they looked like cannabis, but was still was unsure.
He asked the police to help him identify the plants, and when officers went to his home they found three healthy seedlings growing and a packet of about 800 seeds, which were identified as cannabis, police said.
The police said they confiscated the seedlings and the seeds, and took urine samples from Yeh, which came back clean.
A background check found that Yeh had no previous record of drug possession, but police said they had to follow procedure and took him to the Miaoli District Prosecutors’ Office for prosecution.
Cannabis is classified as a Category 2 narcotic under the Narcotics Hazard Prevention Act (毒品危害防制條例), so Yeh must be prosecuted as he had planted the seeds and was in possession of cannabis plants, police said.
As Yeh reported the plants and seeds to the police he can expect a lesser sentence for unknowingly contravening the law, police said.
Earlier last week, police in Chiayi County conducted a raid in Fanlu Township (番路) and found cannabis oil products and pouches of “narcotic coffee powder” and tools for packaging.
A further search uncovered assorted narcotics inside a large polystyrene box labeled as fresh seafood and 20 packets of white powder, which turned out to be 7.3kg of heroin.
Police said it was one of the largest hauls of heroin found in Taiwan recently.
Testing found that the box contained one packet of amphetamine, 82 bottles of cannabis oil for vaping, one box of cannabis chocolates and nine pouches of mephedrone, police said.
Overall, judicial investigators estimated that the drugs seized had a street value of NT$40 million (US$1.26 million).
The house was rented by a man surnamed Tsai (蔡), who now faces prosecution.
Additional reporting by Jason Pan
A study published by online booking platform Expedia revealed searches for travel to Taipei have ballooned 2,786 percent following the lifting of COVID-19 pandemic travel restrictions due to the city being a “designation dupe” for Seoul. The TikTok trend for duping — referring to substituting a designation for a more inexpensive alternative — helped propel interest in Taipei, it said in a consumer survey titled “Unpack ‘24,” which was conducted from September to October in 14 countries. Location dupes are “every bit as delightful as the tried-and-true places travelers love,” Expedia trend tracker Melanie Fish said of the year’s popular alternatives, which
SAFETY IN REGULATION: The proposal states that Chiayi should assess whether it is viable to establish such a district and draft rules to protect clients and sex workers The Chiayi City Council passed a motion yesterday to assess the viability of establishing a regulated red-light district. The council yesterday held its last session of the year, at which its fiscal 2024 budget was approved, along with 61 other proposals. The proposal to assess the viability of establishing a red-light district was put forward by independent Chiayi City Councilor Molly Yen (顏色不分藍綠支持性專區顏色田慎節). The proposal cited 2011 amendments to the Social Order Maintenance Act (社會秩序維護法), which stipulate that city and county governments can pass autonomous regulations on the sex trade to manage the industry and guarantee industry workers’ rights. A ban on the
A small-scale protest that called on the government to cancel its plan to welcome Indian migrant workers in a bid to tackle Taiwan’s labor shortage was held in Taipei yesterday. During the protest, comprised of a few dozen people staged in front of the Presidential Office on Ketagalan Boulevard, the protest’s chief initiator, a woman identified only as “Yuna” said they wanted the central government to reconsider allowing migrant workers from India to enter Taiwan. Most people in Taiwan had little knowledge about the potential plan to allow in Indian migrant workers until a report in the media last month, she
STABILITY AND CHANGE: Flagging in recent polls, Ko this week pledged to maintain President Tsai’s foreign policy, with an emphasis on improving China relations Taiwan People’s Party (TPP) Chairman and presidential candidate Ko Wen-je (柯文哲) yesterday reiterated that he is “deep-green at heart” in response to accusations that he is pivoting his campaign to align closer with the ideology of the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) in the face of flagging polls. Ko made the remark at an agricultural policy conference in Taipei, repeating his comments from an interview with CTS News a day earlier. Ko told the CTS host that he would continue to pursue President Tsai Ing-wen’s (蔡英文) national defense and foreign policy in general, but with an emphasis on establishing a rapport with