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Torture by Police, Forced Disappearance

& Other Ill Treatment

In the early years of the 21st Century, 2000 to 2025                                      

Republic of China (Taiwan)

Taiwan has a dynamic capitalist economy with gradually decreasing government guidance of investment and foreign trade. In keeping with this trend, some large, state-owned banks and industrial firms have been privatized. Exports have provided the primary impetus for industrialization. The island runs a large trade surplus, and its foreign reserves are among the world's largest.  [The World Factbook, U.S.C.I.A. 2009]

Description: Description: Description: Taiwan

CAUTION:  The following links have been culled from the web to illuminate the situation in Taiwan.  Some of these links may lead to websites that present allegations that are unsubstantiated or even false.  No attempt has been made to validate their authenticity or to verify their content.



If you are looking for material to use in a term-paper, you are advised to scan the postings on this page and others to see which aspects of Torture by Authorities are of particular interest to you.  You might be interested in exploring the moral justification for inflicting pain or inhumane or degrading treatment or punishment in order to obtain critical information that may save countless lives, or to elicit a confession for a criminal act, or to punish someone to teach him a lesson outside of the courtroom.  Perhaps your paper might focus on some of the methods of torture, like fear, extreme temperatures, starvation, thirst, sleep deprivation, suffocation, or immersion in freezing water.  On the other hand, you might choose to write about the people acting in an official capacity who perpetrate such cruelty.  There is a lot to the subject of Torture by Authorities.  Scan other countries as well as this one.  Draw comparisons between activity in adjacent countries and/or regions.  Meanwhile, check out some of the Term-Paper resources that are available on-line.

*** ARCHIVES ***

2020 Country Reports on Human Rights Practices: Taiwan

U.S. Dept of State Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor, 30 March 2021

[accessed 9 August 2021]


The law stipulates no violence, threat, inducement, fraud, or other improper means should be used against accused persons, and there were no reports officials employed these practices.

Freedom House Country Report

2020 Edition

[accessed 115 May 2020]


Constitutional protections for due process and defendants’ rights are generally upheld, and police largely respect safeguards against arbitrary detention. Although prosecutors and other law enforcement officials have at times engaged in abusive practices, particularly in prominent and politically charged cases, such violations have been less common in recent years.

Taiwan: Grant retrial to death row inmate tortured to confess

Amnesty International AI, 9 June 2015

[accessed 15 January 2019]

Chiou Ho-shun described being blindfolded, tied up, forced to sit on ice, subjected to electric shocks with an electric baton and having water mixed with pepper poured into his mouth and nose during questioning. The interrogations lasted up to 10 hours at a time, with five or six people beating him to the point where he repeatedly lost consciousness.

The case is one of Taiwan’s most protracted criminal legal cases, with repeated appeal hearings over the past three decades, in which parts of the forced confession have continued to be permitted as evidence in court. No material evidence linking Chiou Ho-shun to the crimes has ever been presented.

In August 2011, Taiwan’s Supreme Court had confirmed Chiou Ho-shun’s death sentence, after all appeals had been exhausted. However, based on the new testimony from the police officers, Chiou Ho-shun’s lawyers can now lodge a motion for a retrial.

Although Chiou Ho-shun has repeatedly claimed he retracted his confession immediately after his interrogation in 1988, prosecutors have previously said Chiou Ho-shun only withdrew it at a later date.


From an old article -- URL not available

Article was published sometime prior to 2015

DEATH PENALTY - On 31 August, after 21 years of litigation, the High Court reconfirmed a “not guilty verdict” and freed the “Hsichih Trio”. Other death penalty cases similarly involving torture and forced confessions remained unresolved.


For more articles:: Search Amnesty International’s website

[accessed 15 January 2019]

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Human Rights Reports » 2005 Country Reports on Human Rights Practices

U.S. Dept of State Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor, March 8, 2006

[accessed 13 February 2013]

[accessed 7 July 2019]

TORTURE AND OTHER CRUEL, INHUMAN, OR DEGRADING TREATMENT OR PUNISHMENT – The law stipulates that no violence, threat, inducement, fraud, or other improper means shall be used against accused persons; however, nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) asserted that police occasionally physically abused persons in their custody. The primary responsibility for investigating torture and mistreatment lies with prosecutors. The Control Yuan, a coequal branch of the political system that investigates official misconduct, also investigates such cases.

The law allows suspects to have attorneys present during interrogations, primarily to ensure that abuse does not take place (see section 1.d.). The Ministry of Justice (MOJ) stated that each interrogation is audiotaped or videotaped and that any allegation of mistreatment is investigated, and that police are subject to severe punishment for abusing their authority in arresting or detaining suspects or using threats of violence to extract evidence. There were no reports of police convicted of abusing suspects. Some lawyers and legal scholars asserted that abuses occurred in local police stations where interrogations were not recorded and when attorneys were not present.

The Criminal Code provides that criminal charges must be based on legally obtained evidence and that confessions, whether by defendants or accomplices, unsupported by other evidence shall not be sufficient to convict defendants; confessions alleged to be illegally obtained must be investigated before proceeding to other evidence.

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Cite this webpage as: Patt, Prof. Martin, "Torture by Police, Forced Disappearance & Other Ill Treatment in the early years of the 21st Century- Taiwan",, [accessed <date>]