Imagine this: You’re a student in Taiwan, studying at the Chinese Culture University. You live in an apartment with 5 other women. You know, to share the rent. Living in a city like Taipei is expensive. And one day, you find that the yoghurt drink you’d kept in the fridge isn’t there. One of your flatmates has enjoyed it without asking you first. What would you do? Shake your head, whine about them being ungrateful or help yourself to their food, right?
Because Apple Daily reported that such a case did happen. And the student in question was quite upset. When none of her flatmates took responsibility for the “crime”, she took matters to the local police. She rummaged through the trash, found the empty bottle and requested them to obtain the culprit’s fingerprints. However, when it was found that they were irretrievable, she pushed for a DNA test!
What did the Police say?
Surprisingly, the police took on her case. They collected DNA samples from her and all 5 flatmates. A full-fledged forensic investigation is underway. The latest update from this bizarre (and a little laughable) case is that one of the five suspects has been formally charged with theft.
The local citizens did NOT take the news well. And for good reason.
According to TVBS News and BBC News, the cost of carrying on such an investigation is a LOT. The forensic investigation requires inspection kits, manpower and technological resources. These costs are estimated to be at least NT$3,000 (~INR 7000) for each suspect. The police have tested 6, incurring a total cost of NT$18,000 (~ INR 42,000). Compare this to the actual price of the yoghurt drink – that is NT$59 (~INR 140) and you’ll know why locals are angry.
Taiwan citizens agree that citizens can and should approach the authorities to seek justice. But in cases such as these, involving the police is a waste of resources. And more importantly, a waste of taxpayer money. The popular opinion is that – In extreme situations where a citizen insists on such tests, he/she should be made to bear all the expenses.
You know what all of this reminds me of? Ross Geller!
So, what do you guys make of this bizarre case?