Old woman convicted of locking caregiver on balcony

TAIPEI - A 20-day sentence suspended for two years handed down to a 60-year-old woman in New Taipei for locking her Indonesian caretaker out on the balcony of her home in 2010 has been upheld by the Supreme Court. According to the Supreme Court decision, which was released July 5, the woman, surnamed Chen, was found guilty by both the District Court and the High Court of false imprisonment of the caregiver, who had been hired by her daughter.

The Indonesian woman began looking after Chen Nov. 1, 2010, but was locked out on the balcony for 30 minutes by the woman on the evening of Nov. 7.

When the caregiver asked Chen to unlock the door, Chen responded by saying that "I don't want you anymore, I will send you back," according to court documents.

It was not until Chen realized that the caregiver was calling the 1955 helpline for foreign workers in Taiwan that she let her back in.

The Indonesian woman then sought help from the Taiwan International Workers Association and reported the case to the police.

The lower courts did not accept Chen's defense that she could not have locked the caregiver out because she could not carry things.

With the Supreme Court's upholding of the High Court decision, the case is final and cannot be further appealed.

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