Taipei-A taxi driver, who was convicted by a district court of drugging three women from South Korea and sexually assaulting one of them, on Thursday received a sentence of seven years and 4 months in his appeal of the case in the Taiwan High Court.
In its ruling, the high court overturned the Shilin District Court's conviction of Chan Yu-ju (???) on the charge of drugging the three women but upheld the guilty verdict on the sexual assault charge.
It means that his total prison time has been reduced from a combined 11 years handed down by the district court for the drugging and sexual assault charges.
However, the high court increased the sentence against the taxi driver for sexual assault from four years and six months to seven years and four months, saying that his actions constituted forced sexual intercourse, rather than just indecent assault as the district court had determined.
The high court said it had dismissed the drugging charge because the drug in question was a sleeping pill and Chan was not aware that it contained an illegal substance called FM2.
Chan, who worked for a company that specializes in tour packages for South Korean tourists, was accused of spiking soft drinks in Jiufen, New Taipei on Jan. 12 last year, and offering them to three women in his taxi.
After two of the women fell asleep in the vehicle, Chan drove them to Shilin Night Market in Taipei, where one of them left the taxi, according to the accusations against him.
Chan then drove the two sleeping women to a nearby secluded area and raped one of them, prosecutors said.
Chan still has the right to appeal the high court's verdict.
Source: Focus Taiwan News Channel