Singapore couple suspected of dumping newborn baby in Taipei

It was a horrifying find - the body of a newborn baby in a bin full of kitchen waste.

A recycling company worker in New Taipei City immediately alerted the police of his discovery on Tuesday (Feb 26) morning, sparking an investigation into a possible case of murder and abandonment.

To trace the whereabouts of the dead infant girl's parents, Taiwanese police reviewed hundreds of surveillance footage captured by cameras located along the route of the garbage truck.

On Thursday, they finally found a lead - with a Singapore connection.

In a video captured outside a restaurant in Ximending, a man in his 20s is seen carrying a black plastic bag - which is believed to contain the baby - at around 3am on Tuesday.

After throwing the bag into the recycling bin, he left the scene in a hurry.

The police also observed that the man spoke Mandarin with a foreign accent, which led them to visit a hotel popular with tourists from Southeast Asia.

But by Tuesday afternoon, the man and his girlfriend, who are from Singapore, had already checked out of the hotel. They flew home on the same day.

Hotel staff told Apple Daily that the woman appeared to be pregnant when they first arrived, but her tummy "disappeared" when she left.

The police also collected DNA samples from the couple's room to determine whether they are related to the dead infant.

If a match is found between the suspects and the baby, Taiwan's criminal investigation bureau said it will contact its counterpart in Singapore to assist.

The baby was found with her umbilical cord and placenta intact and is believed to have been disposed of shortly after she was born.

lamminlee@asiaone.com