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Suspect in drug case strangles himself in interrogation room

TAIPEI, Taiwan -- A man died after strangling himself with shoelaces during interrogation in connection with a drug case at the Yunlin District Prosecutors' Office, prosecutors said yesterday.

The man, surnamed Lo, was left alone in an interrogation room on Friday when he used his own shoelaces to strangle himself, prosecutors said.

Lo was rushed to the hospital, but he was pronounced dead on arrival, prosecutors said, adding that coroners did not find any injuries on the body.

Lo was arrested along with three others on suspicion of possession of illegal drugs. They had been questioned by local police before they were sent to prosecutors for further questioning.

They were in the custody of court bailiffs when Lo killed himself, prosecutors said.

Lo's family questioned why the dangerous items — shoelaces — were not taken away from the suspect when he was arrested, but the Kuo Chi-ming, a senior Yunlin district prosecutor, explained that shoelaces are not considered dangerous items.

But Kuo stressed that a probe will be opened to see whether or not the court bailiffs are at fault.

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