Taiwan VP slams police cover-up in hit and run that killed student

Taiwan VP slams police cover-up in hit and run that killed student
Taiwan's Vice President, Wu Den-yih.

TAIPEI, Taiwan - Responding to questions concerning the son of his bodyguard - a police officer assigned to Daxi Precinct in Taoyuan - attempting to destroy evidence from his hit and run accident in January, Vice President Wu Den-yih said that such actions are unethical and the laws of the country will not tolerate such behaviour.

One must repent and be responsible for what they have done wrong, Wu said.

Li Wen-i, the son of Wu's bodyguard Li Ching-yuan, allegedly killed a female university student with his car and did not report the incident, reports said.

Since Li is a seasoned civil servant, this mistake should never have been made, Wu said.

Ordered by the Taoyuan District Prosecutors Office, the Ministry of Justice's Agency Against Corruption and the Taoyuan City government created a special task force to investigate the case.

Daxi Precinct Nanya station's police chief Chang Yu-lin, deputy police chief Chu Ching-chuan, Guishan district police officer Ping Shih-hao and other witnesses were called in for questioning on Feb. 10.

After interrogation, Chang, Chu and Ping were released on bail at NT$300,000 (S$12,930), NT$500,000 and NT$100,000 respectively, prosecutors said yesterday.

Hit and Hide

According to prosecutors, at around 8:30 p.m. Li was driving in Luzhu District with his daughter on New Year's Day when he tried to pass a car in his lane and hit the female university student surnamed Wang in oncoming traffic.

A witness said Li had been drinking prior to the accident, prosecutors said.

The prosecutors' investigation found that a friend picked up Li 30 minutes after the accident and settled him at a nearby auto repair shop.

Chang, Chu and Ping met with Li after he contacted them, prosecutors said.

Prosecutors said that the three police officers acted as Li's accomplices in their alleged plan to destroy all evidence that pointed to Li's hit and run.

According to prosecutors, a motel in Daxi became Li's hideout, which was the place Li's father visited him.

Destroyed Surveillance Footage

The police officers involved in the conspiracy allegedly disposed of surveillance footage from the area after collecting the video files from property owners that were told about a made-up case under investigation, reports said.

Reports said that police dash cam footage and secret police video related to the accident also disappeared.

Police officers involved in Li's cover up also collectively changed their cell phones, reports said.

Despite the elaborate plan to bury the case, prosecutors found one surveillance camera near an auto repair shop that had not been tampered with.

Reports said that the footage showed police officers gathering together in the auto shop, which led prosecutors to discovering that the officers had been tinkering with evidence.

Li turned himself in 18 hours after the collision, with his father by his side.

A family member of the deceased student criticised the actions of the police involved and said she can no longer trust the police.

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