Taipei--An armed suspect who claimed to be a gang leader and was wanted in connection with several crimes was arrested in New Taipei on Sunday after a three-hour standoff with police at an apartment near a night market.
The police were chasing Liu Pang-cheng (???), 60, early Sunday when an exchange of gunfire started and he fled to an apartment close to Xingnan Night Market in Zhonghe District.
During a three-hour standoff, a swat team was deployed to the area, which was cordoned off.
At one point, Liu said he was holding a hand grenade and he asked to see his girlfriend, according to the police.
After the woman was brought to the scene, she and the police persuaded Liu to surrender. He was arrested and taken to the Xindian Police Precinct.
The incident occurred as police were pursuing Liu to arrest him for alleged involvement in organized crime, including drug trade, blackmail, and illegal possession of firearms, they said.
Liu was listed as a wanted suspect with a criminal record and was believed to be head of a gang that specialized in debt collection though the use violence, control of its members with the use of drugs, and recruitment of drug addicts to sell illegal substances, police said.
Hu Mu-yuan (???), head of the New Taipei City Police Department, said Liu was trying to avoid arrest because he thought he would be given either a death sentence or life imprisonment when the case comes to court.
In an attempt to persuade Liu to surrender, the police told him that he would get no more than 18 years, with a possibility of parole, Hu said.
Liu has said that he is chief adviser to the Sun branch of Tien Dao Meng (???), one of largest criminal organizations in Taiwan.
In 1966, he was named as a suspect in the murder of Taoyuan County Magistrate Liu Pang-yu (???), who was one of eight people killed in a mass shooting at his home.
However, Liu Pang-cheng was not charged in that case because he had an alibi, and no arrests were ever made for the case.
According to reports at the time, the two men were cousins, but Liu Pang-yu's relatives have denied that he was related in any way to the alleged gang leader.
Source: Focus Taiwan News Channel