Taipei MRT stabbing leaves four injured

TAIPEI • An unemployed man wielding a kitchen knife wounded four people in a subway attack in Taiwan's capital, just over a year after a stabbing spree left four dead and more than 20 injured, police said yesterday.

The attack took place at central Zhongshan Mass Rapid Transit (MRT) station on Monday. Witnesses told of passengers screaming and running away, shouting: "Someone has a knife!" local media reported.

Television footage showed the attacker being bundled to the ground inside the MRT station by three security guards.

Police are holding 27-year-old Kuo Yen-chun over Monday night's attack. He is being questioned on charges of attempted murder and theft - the knife was stolen from a shop.

"He lives with his aunt who he had a fight with last week, and he had been sleeping in a park since," deputy branch chief Chang Chin-an, of Tatung district police, told Agence France-Presse. "He's long-term unemployed and stabbed using a stolen kitchen knife."

The victims, aged 31 to 50, were hospitalised but have since been discharged, the authorities said.

Interior Minister Chen Wei-zen pledged to beef up patrols at MRT stations and urged the public not to panic.

The attack came after former college student Cheng Chieh, 22, was sentenced to death for a stabbing spree in a subway carriage in May last year which killed four and left more than 20 others wounded.

Cheng will face a firing squad after being convicted on four counts of murder and 22 counts of attempted murder.

Relatives of the victims welcomed the sentence.

AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on July 22, 2015, with the headline 'Taipei MRT stabbing leaves four injured'. Print Edition | Subscribe