A robbery happened in Hong Kong on October when a Taiwanese man robbed multi-million dollar watches and fled back to Taiwan. As the two do not have a mutual legal assistance agreement, Hong Kong authorities have no way to arrest the suspect. ROC Justice Minister Tsai Ching-hsiang denied it's a "Taiwanese version of the Chan Tung-kai case" as the media put it-because he said Taiwan has legal jurisdiction and the case is being handled with dedication.
According to the South China Morning Post, a Taiwanese man with an air gun robbed a watch store in Tsim Sha Tsui on Oct. 6. He got away with two watches valued at NT$3.88 million and flew back to Taiwan that night. Taiwan and Hong Kong do not have a mutual legal assistance agreement, which means he remains a free man in Taiwan and Hong Kong can't ask Taiwan to arrest him. This seems to be the opposite of the Chan Tung-kai case, and many people are worried the man will not be brought to justice.
What is being reported by the media -- we will try to get a better understanding of what is being reported. Under Article 43 of our Laws and Regulations Regarding Hong Kong and Macao Affairs, if I am a Taiwanese person who commits a crime in Hong Kong -- we (Taiwan) have jurisdiction.
ROC Justice Minister Tsai Ching-hsiang says Taiwan has legal jurisdiction over this armed robbery case and under the Laws and Regulations Regarding Hong Kong and Macao Affairs, the Criminal Code applies to relevant offenses "for which the minimum penalty is imprisonment of three years or longer." Tsai also said in the absence of evidence, authorities may not be able to pursue the case.
So, this is why mutual legal assistance is important. If a foreign national commits a crime in our country, we will need to cooperate through mutual legal assistance to bring that person to justice.
The Hong Kong media is calling this judicial loophole a "Taiwanese version of the Chan Tung-kai case." Tsai denies this, saying Taiwan's attitude is completely different than Hong Kong's because it will pursue justice. According to reports, a special task force has been set up to investigate the case and the Criminal Investigation Bureau will act as Hong Kong's contact window in Taiwan.