TAIPEI - Details have emerged in a case involving a couple detained by authorities on suspicion of murdering two victims in order to collect insurance payments, yesterday.
Police in Nantou County are piecing together the plot hatched by Wang Chung-yi (age 39) and his wife Chen Li-ya (age undisclosed) involving the murder of two victims, believed to be Wang's mother and stepfather.
Investigators found Wang's mother (age 72) drowned in a creek approximately 110 centimeters deep used to irrigate melon crops in Nantou's Guoxing Township. The suspects were attempting to make passage for Indonesia before they were detained at Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport on April 5 by authorities.
Probable Motive Tied to Credit Card Debt
Police stumbled upon the case due to Wang's zealous attempts to claim insurance premiums on behalf of his mother. Wang's repeated calls to the insurance company that provided coverage for his mother raised suspicions and authorities were notified of the suspect's dubious intentions.
Authorities believe that due to the Wang family's insolvency, the suspect's attempts to apply for life insurance were repeatedly rejected by an insurance company.
The insurance company was due to finally agreed to insure the suspect's mother for a plan covering accidental death and dismemberment after repeated threats to report the case to the Financial Supervisory Commission.
The plan purchased capped premiums at NT$500,000 dollars (S$21,887).
A month after the victim was covered by the insurance in August 2014, the suspects initiated their plan to collect her insurance premiums. Two months later, Wang and Chen took the victim out by a stream in which she was later found to have drowned.
Following the investigators' discovery and examination of the body, Wang arranged for the body to be donated for scientific research, for which he collected NT$50,000. The suspect also collected NT$150,000 from farmers' associations for burial costs and NT$180,000 from the Xinyi Township's (Nantou County) fund for elderly assistance.
Wang's repeated attempts to cash in on his mother's accidental insurance and his subsequent decision to donate her body to science, raised suspicions at the insurance company, which notified authorities half a year ago.
Stepfather's Death Also Under Investigation
Authorities are also investigating the suspicious death of Wang's stepfather (then aged 75) after it was discovered that husband and wife died within four months of each other. Initially, the suspected victim's remains were discovered in a Beigang creek bed in February.
According to investigators Wang's stepfather was suffering from renal failure and other ailments last May when the suspect removed him from hospital care despite a high fever. The suspect reported his stepfather missing in the vicinity of Zhongyuan Bridge in Nantou's Renai Township on May 31, 2014.
Police investigations report that according to plans made by the suspected killers, Chen retrieved her father in law from the hospital and pushed him off the Zhongyuan Bridge.
Investigators reveal that Wang attempted to have the victim's remains (then yet to be identified) transported away from the funeral parlour.
Due to necessary laboratory work to determine the DNA of the victim and the subsequent arrangements for funeral costs, Wang was reported to have placed numerous calls to the local prosecutor's office, the forensic investigators and the insurance company involved in order to obtain death compensation.