Japan deems suspect guilty for murders: MOFA

By Joseph Yeh,The China Post

The Japanese authorities have concluded that Chang Chih-yang (張志揚), the 30-year-old prime suspect in the murder of two Taiwanese students in Japan, was responsible for the double homicide took place in Tokyo this January, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA) said yesterday. Tokyo police had officially closed the case on March 9 and pointed to Chang as the killer of two women, 25-year-old Chu Li-chieh (朱立婕) and 23-year-old Lin Chih-ying (林芷瀅), Huang Ming-lung (黃明朗), secretary-general of MOFA’s Association of East Asian Relations, told reporters yesterday. Prosecutors in Tokyo will not indict Chang on murder charges as he killed himself in police custody, Huang said.

Chang committed suicide while being escorted to a police station for interrogation, five days after he committed the brutal killings in a Tokyo dormitory on Jan. 5. The MOFA official made the remarks when asked to confirm a Chinese-language newspaper report yesterday that quoted Lin’s family as saying that they have received the official probe results on the murder after visiting Tokyo on March 26. The Japanese authorities determined that Chang was responsible for the crime, citing unrequited love as the motive behind his cold-blooded murder of his two fellow countrymen. Family Calls to Amend Laws

The family of the murdered women are unable to file for compensation for their losses in Japan and Taiwan due to loopholes in laws in both nations, the United Daily News report said. Japan’s Criminal Victims Compensation Act only covers compensation claims made by Japanese nationals instead of foreigners, which leaves Lin and Chu’s families unable to file for compensation, according to the report. They could not file for compensation in Taiwan either because local laws that grant compensation for victims of a crime only do so on crimes occuring locally, it added. Lin and Chu’s family, therefore, asked for the government to amend related regulations to fix the loopholes to better protect victims and their families, the report said. In response, Huang confirmed yesterday that Japanese laws do disqualify victim families of the double homicide to file for compensation. He showed sympathy to families over the incident but said it is out of the foreign ministry’s jurisdiction regarding the call to amend compensation laws.

But the MOFA offered administrative assistance to the family of the two students when they went to Japan to be briefed on the investigation report by the Japanese police in late March, Huang added.

“The families also collected the victims’ belongs and closed down their bank accounts there,” Huang said.