Three detained on charges of insurance fraud, murder

By Amy Chyan ,The China Post

TAIPEI, Taiwan — An 18-year-old woman suspected of devising a plan to kill her husband in order to receive insurance payouts was released by the Kaohsiung District Prosecutors Office yesterday. The woman was let go without bail after prosecutors’ investigations resulted in insufficient evidence to prove her guilty. Three other suspects are now in police custody on charges of homicide and fraud. One more suspect remains on the run.

According to police, the testimonies of all four suspects claimed that the deceased man, surnamed Wu, was also in on the insurance fraud. The planned scam got out of control and allegedly turned into murder.

Reports say Wu was killed in September in a hit-and-run incident in which he was knocked over railings and into a lake. Wu’s brother said is he unable to accept the police conclusion. He said that the rest of the suspects are protecting his brother’s wife, a woman surnamed Tsai, so she can receive insurance payouts. Wu’s mother became suspicious about her son’s death and called police after she discovered that Tsai had purchased insurance for her son at seven different insurance companies before he died. The total insurance claim added up to NT$46 million. In all of the insurance contracts, Tsai was named as the payout beneficiary.

According to Wu’s mother, Tsai did not help organize Wu’s funeral and she moved in with one of the alleged suspects, a man surnamed Chen, shortly after Wu’s death. In addition, Chen reportedly became highly involved in the insurance claims, even pretending to be Tsai’s cousin.

According to the Criminal Investigation Bureau, investigators became suspicious after finding that there were no brake marks at the crime scene and that no blood stains could be found on the front bumper.

Wu previously received insurance payouts for a car accident and for injuries sustained after he was chased by a person with a knife.