TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — An Italian man has been handed a two-year prison term for attempting to rob a convenience store in New Taipei City with a pair of scissors in August of this year.
According to the New Taipei City District Court's verdict, an Italian national in his 30s identified as Bruno Giuliano Maicol entered a Hi-Life in New Taipei City's Tucheng District on the night of Aug. 21 wearing a gold-colored motorcycle helmet and a rain poncho. When the 21-year-old female clerk asked him what he wanted to buy, he suddenly pulled out a pair of scissors and brandished them at her neck.
He then ordered the clerk and her 22-year-old male co-worker to empty the money from the cash register and place it in a plastic bag. However, the male employee rushed Maicol and wrestled the scissors out of his hand.
Maicol immediately fled the scene, leaving behind the scissors and a red-and-white plastic bag. He did not manage to make away with any cash or store property.
Reviewing surveillance footage around the area, police spotted Maicol wearing a gray T-shirt and black shorts outside the convenience store. Following his failed attempt to rob the Hi-Life, Maicol discarded his helmet and donned a dark jacket in an attempt to "disguise" himself.
Scissors used in attempted robbery. (New Taipei City Police Department photo)
Apparently familiar with the area, Maicol was seen trying to slip down narrow alleys to throw police off his trail. However, his every movement was recorded by the city's ubiquitous surveillance cameras.
After expanding their search of surveillance footage and questioning his friends, police were able to track Maicol to a Hilton Hotel in Banqiao District, where he was staying with his ex-wife. At 11 a.m. on Aug. 23, police raided the hotel room and arrested him at the scene.
When questioned by police, Maicol confessed to trying to rob the store. He said he had resorted to robbery because he was divorced from his Taiwanese wife, unable to find work, and low on money.
Maicol pled guilty to attempted robbery during the trial. The court reviewed surveillance footage from the convenience store and determined that a crime had indeed been committed.
However, the court decided to hand him a reduced sentence because the defendant had not harmed the clerk, the blade had not come in contact with her body, he had failed to pull off the robbery, and he reached a settlement with the victim. Therefore, the court sentenced Maicol to two years in prison and deportation from the country upon the completion of his sentence, reported Liberty Times.