Taiwan can give life in prison for DUI repeat offenders who cause fatal crashes

Lawmakers amended the Penal Code under pressure from the public

Taiwan is toughening up its laws against DUI.

Taiwan is toughening up its laws against DUI. (CNA photo)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) – Drunk drivers who cause a death within five years of their previous case can be sentenced to prison terms from five years to life, according to an amendment passed by the Legislative Yuan Friday (May 31).

Lawmakers were responding to calls from the public protesting against too lenient punishment for DUI transgressions, the Central News Agency reported.

According to the amendments to the Penal Code passed in third reading Friday, the longer prison sentences will apply to anyone who has been convicted for drunk driving or who has been subject to deferred prosecution for the same, and who commits another offense causing a death within five years of the previous DUI case.

If a victim is severely injured, the drunk driver will be jailed between three and 10 years, according to the CNA report.

Because earlier negotiations at the Legislative Yuan failed to reach a consensus on the necessary measures to curtail drunk driving, Friday’s amendments followed a vote.