Taiwan's Judicial System Again Under the Gun Over Wrongful Execution

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Saturday October 13, by Jerome F. Keating Ph.D.

Taiwan Serviceman, Chiang Kuo-ching,who was wrongfully executed 15 years ago for a confession achieved through torture, has only received partial justice post-humously. His conviction and execution were proven to be the result of torture thus exonerating him, but his torturers have still escaped the arm of the law, thus again indirectly indicting the dinosaur prosecutors and judges left over in Taiwan's judicial system from the one-party state days of the KMT.

The irony rests on the decision of the current prosecutors questionable judgment and application of the statute of limitations. The normal statute of limitations expires after ten years, but if torture leads to the death of the accused, it can be extended to 20 or even 30 years thus making it applicable in Chiang's case.

The prosecutors claim that they cannot establish a link between the torture and the execution, what gives? If an innocent man is tortured and confesses to a crime he did not commit, how can one not see a link between the torture and the admission of guilt and therefore execution? Put plainly, what other reason would cause an innocent man to confess to a crime he did not commit? If he had wanted to confess earlier, why would he then undergo torture? Why are the prosecutors letting those guilty of torture off the hook?

These are the questions that Taiwanese must ask as they continue to examine the unfortunate baggage that the country still suffers from its one-party state days.

Chiang Kuo-ching, born on 10/10, the National Day of the ROC, was given the name Kuo-ching (i.e. celebrate the national day) by his parents because of that. The double irony of the double ten day is that the country he served, executed him because its military leaders wanted a swift resolution to the case where their inability to solve it was proving a loss of face; they tortured him, got the confession, and got their promotions. Justice has not yet been served.