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THPO did ask for ballistics test in airman's suicide case: MND

The Ministry of National Defense (MND) confirmed yesterday that the Taiwan High Prosecutors' Office (THPO, 台灣高等法院檢察署) did ask the MND to conduct a ballistics test in reference to the apparent suicide of an airman, despite the THPO's denial that such a request was ever issued.

Chou Chih-jen (周志仁), of the MND's Department of Legal Affairs, verified the MND's claim by reading aloud the official test request from the THPO in the Judiciary and Organic Laws and Statutes Committee (司法及法制委員會) of the Legislative Yuan.

A few days ago, prosecutors said the request for a ballistic identification test on a human body as a court reference in the suicide case of airman Tsai Shiue-liang (蔡學良) was only a misunderstanding. However, as revealed by Chou's reading of the apparent THPO document in the Legislature yesterday, the request appears to have been genuine.

The document stated that the THPO demanded the MND to do a ballistic identification with a locally made T65 rifle and videotape the entire process. Moreover, the document also requested an examination on the mouth and skeleton of the body to reveal the extent of bodily harm in comparison to the corpse of the deceased airman. The THPO also demanded to examine the burns around the test subject's head to verify the effects of a point-blank gunshot to the mouth. Moreover, prosecutors requested to see if such a gunshot would lead to any damage to the weapon itself. The requests of various examinations of burns and damage were listed on the document in clear detail, sources said.

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