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Taichung court sentences man over bet-related sexual assault

TAIPEI, Taiwan -- The Taiwan High Court, Taichung Branch Court (台中高分院) yesterday sentenced a man to one year and seven months over charges of sexual assault over a disputed bet he made with a woman last year.

According to reports, the case dates back to a birthday party held by the defendant, surnamed Hu (胡), in Chunghua last year. During the party a woman challenged Hu to a drinking contest, boasting that “Hu may have his way with her” if he bested her. After rounds of heavy drinking, the woman awoke naked from a drunken stupor with signs indicating that sexual intercourse had occurred, leading to a lawsuit against Hu.

In the first instance of the case, the court found Hu not guilty, based on testimony made by Hu and a number of witnesses who had indicated that the women had given consent. Hu's accuser had failed to appear at the trail to give her testimony.

The second instance of the case at the high court reversed the ruling, finding Hu guilty of sexual assault. The high court stated that Hu had taken advantage of the woman's inebriated state and had taken her drunken statements too far. Given the circumstances, the high court gave Hu a reduced sentence of one year and seven months, as opposed to the minimum sentence of three years common for sexual assault crimes.

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