Taiwan legislator forgets NT$3 million in cash on high-speed train

Lawmaker's son needed money to invest in beverage shop in the Philippines

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DPP legislator Chen Ming-wen.

DPP legislator Chen Ming-wen. (CNA photo)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) – A suitcase containing NT$3 million (US$95,500) in cash was left unattended on a high-speed train to Taipei and turned out to belong to Democratic Progressive Party lawmaker Chen Ming-wen (陳明文), reports said Tuesday (September 3).

The money was destined for Chen’s eldest son to invest in a beverage shop in the Philippines, reports said.

The unlocked suitcase was found on an early train to Taipei Tuesday. Rail staff inspected the item to try and find its owner, and came to the conclusion it belonged to the prominent lawmaker and former Chiayi County magistrate, according to the United Daily News.

Chen only remembered he had left the money on the train when having lunch with his son, who later came to pick up the suitcase, the report said.

The son explained he did not have a credit card nor a bank account in the Philippines, where he spent two years, the Liberty Times reported. He would have used part of the money to buy tea processing equipment in Taiwan, and the rest to exchange into US dollars to invest overseas.

While it would not comment on individual cases due to privacy concerns, the rail company said it had not alerted police because its standard operating procedures only specified it should try and locate the owner of any lost item.