Lawyer: Malaysian student’s family to sue Taiwan authorities, alleging negligence over her death

SIBU: The family of Irene Chung will be filing a civil suit against several authorities in Taiwan for alleged negligence that led to her death on Oct 29, says their lawyer.

These include the Chang Jung Christian University (CJCU), Taiwan City Council, and Taiwanese government.

Chung's family lawyer Yap Hoi Liong told a press conference on Monday (Nov 23) that the issue in the civil suit was that if they had taken preventive measures, she would not have died.

"About a month earlier on Sept 29, it was reported that another student of CJCU had almost become the victim of the same suspect. If they had taken up that case, we strongly believe it would not have led to Chung's death," said Yap.

Yap claimed that Taiwan President Tsai Ing-Wen had admitted to Chung’s family that there was negligence in not following up in the first case.

Photocopies of Tsai's statement were given to the press.

"Since the President had admitted negligence by her authorities, we can now proceed with the civil suit," said Yap.

He added that the family is engaging Taiwan Bar Association president Lin Ruey-Cheng to take up the civil suit.

On the suspect, Yap said he has not been charged yet, though he had admitted to the murder.

Yap said the family wants the suspect to be tried in court under Section 226-1 of the Penal Code of the Republic of China which provides for the mandatory death sentence for murder.

The family is also seeking the release of the autopsy report on the cause of Irene's death in a month's time instead of the usual three months.

"We are also seeking for Tiong (Special Envoy to China Datuk Seri Tiong King Sing) to do a government-to-government consultation to compel the Malaysian government to take cognisance of the case together with the Taiwanese government," he added.

Meanwhile, Irene's father Desmond Chung thanked the immigration departments of Malaysia and Taiwan for granting them quick approval to Taiwan on Oct 30 to bring back her remains.

He also expressed his appreciation to Tiong and the Sarawak Disaster Management Committee for other assistance.

Irene, 24, a student of CJCU in Tainan, Taiwan went missing on the evening of Oct 28. She was found dead the next day and an arrested suspect had confessed to the abduction and killing.

According a CNA report, the suspect had admitted killing the victim by strangulation and disposing of her body.

Her parents flew to Taiwan on Oct 30 to bring back her remains, and she was laid to rest at Nirvana Memorial Park here on Nov 21.

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