Taipei--The Kaohsiung District Court on Wednesday sentenced three soldiers to six months in jail and fined them up to NT$150,000 (US$4,929) each for the brutal killing of a dog last year that sparked a public uproar.
The trio were sergeant Chen Yu-tsai (???), first private Chang Feng-yu (???) and first private Hu Chia-wei (???), all Republic of China (Taiwan) Marine Corps members stationed in Kaohsiung.
Chen's sentence can be commuted to a fine, while the two first privates received two-year suspensions of their sentences and were ordered by the court to perform 120 hours of community service instead.
The case dates back to June 26, 2016, when Kaohsiung City Councilor Chen Hsin-yu (???) posted an 80-second video on YouTube showing a white dog hanging by its neck from a metal chain at the edge of an embankment.
The dog died after a painful struggle in which it tried, but failed, to climb up the embankment.
The councilor condemned the brutality, and the video triggered a public search for the dog's abusers.
According to an investigation by the Kaohsiung District Prosecutors Office, Chen allegedly ordered Chang to "make the dog disappear" because he did not want to see it wandering around their base's barracks.
Chang then had Hu beat the dog with a wooden club before the two of them chained it to the embankment, hung it to death and dumped the body into the sea, prosecutors said.
Chang even took a video of the gruesome killing and posted it on a Line chat group, according to prosecutors who indicted the trio last December on charges of violating Article 25 of the Animal Protection Act.
Under the act, people found guilty of killing a cat or dog without reason are subject to a prison sentence of up to one year and a fine between NT$100,000 and NT$1 million.
Source: Focus Taiwan News Channel