Positive steps urged on Taiwan surrenderTop News | Sophie Hui 21 Oct 2019
Murder suspect Chan Tong-kai will be barred from entering Taiwan to surrender himself unless the Hong Kong government is willing to cooperate and hand over evidence in the case, Taiwan's Mainland Affairs Council says.
The council said Taiwan's government has not changed its stance on achieving justice for victim Poon Hiu-wing. The line from Taiwan's Ministry of Justice is that SAR authorities cannot simply allow suspect Chan to go to Taiwan.
Chan, 20, is wanted for allegedly strangling Poon, his 20-year-old girlfriend who was pregnant, in Taipei in February last year.
The Hong Kong government last night said Chan's surrender is "purely out of his own free will" and hopes Taiwan will "take positive steps to receive a self-surrendering person wanted by them in a pragmatic manner."
It added: "Allegations that Chan was manipulated to surrender or his decision was out of political maneuvering are totally groundless."
The statement also said it has always stated clearly to Taiwan that Hong Kong would be pleased to give necessary and legally feasible help to Taiwan in its investigation of the case.
Chan returned to Hong Kong from Taiwan after the killing and was sentenced to 29 months in prison in April for laundering money, which was stolen from Poon. He could be released on Wednesday.
There is no extradition arrangement between Hong Kong and Taiwan.
"If the Hong Kong government would like to let Chan surrender himself to Taiwan, it should do it through judicial cooperation and provide evidence concerning the case so an investigation can be conducted," it said.
And SAR cooperation in a prosecution should be based on "equality, dignity and mutual benefits" without any talk about judicial sovereignty.
Earlier, the Mainland Affairs Council said the SAR had not provided evidence to help in prosecuting a murder case and so was shirking responsibility.
It claimed the SAR was giving up jurisdiction deliberately, which had ulterior motives.
It was also reported that activist Anglican cleric Peter Koon Ho-ming, who visited Chan in prison every week and persuaded him to surrender to authorities on the island, had a visa application to Taiwan rejected.
On Friday Chief Executive Carrie Lam had received a letter from Chan, expressing a willingness to surrender to Taiwan.
Taiwan think tank consultant Tung Li-wen said the Taiwan government's stance was correct. He said there is a big difference between premeditated murder and unpremeditated homicide.
Chan's case was cited in the fugitive amendment move this year.
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