Bail upheld for ‘Murder Cafe’ suspects

By Ann Yu and Enru Lin ,The China Post

TAIPEI, Taiwan — Prosecutors yesterday ruled to uphold the controversial bail decisions for three suspects in the high-profile case dubbed “Murder Cafe.” Late yesterday, prosecutors reiterated their appeals against release conditions for three men suspected of a double homicide in February. Bail for the trio is upheld, albeit with house arrest and travel restrictions, ruled the Shihlin District Court (士林地院). In late February, Chen Chin-fu (陳進福) and wife Chang Tsui-ping (張翠萍) were found dead on the banks of the Tamsui River in Bali District. Investigators revealed that they were seen last at the coffee shop that was managed by Hsieh Yi-han (謝依涵). Hsieh was detained incommunicado last Thursday without bail. Three male suspects, Lu Ping-hung (呂炳宏), Ou Shih-chen (歐石城) and Chung Tien-feng (鍾典峰) were released on bail. Lu, owner of the famous cafe Mama Mouth (媽媽嘴), was granted bail of NT$3 million last week after prosecutors reportedly failed to collect enough evidence.

Lu later released a statement on the website of cafe: “I would also like to get to the bottom of this … Deepest apologies for those who want coffee from us.” According to prosecutors, Lu had accompanied the cafe manager to an incense shop after the time of the murder to purchase “paper money” — paper that is burned for the dead. Police said that statements from the three male suspects — such as their time of departure from the coffee shop and their whereabouts after the murder — are inconsistent.

According to authorities, Lu reported to the police district yesterday morning as stipulated by bail conditions. In response to reporters’ questions over the scheme, Lu only answered, “Thanks for your concern.”