Cover Picture: United Daily News.
New Taipei City police chief Hu Mu-yuan announced the launch a coordinated crackdown on organized crime groups responsible for a spate of street violence that has led commentators to dub New Taipei City as “New Gotham City”. The operation begins tonight, November 30.
The call comes after the month of November saw street brawls occur just about every night. There have been twenty six cases of street violence recorded in the city so far this month, usually involving groups using weapons such as sticks, bats, and knives.
The police chief called a special meeting of the city’s 15 police bureaus recently, and urged them to take a three-pronged approach to combating the violence. Chief Hu ordered police to quickly respond and arrest perpetrators, identify groups who caused the problems, and to raid the businesses that provided criminal groups their income.
In August this year, New Taipei City Mayor, Eric Chu, called on the police and judiciary to make the municipality the safest in Taiwan. The recent surge in gang, and street violence, of which many cases have been recorded and uploaded on social media, however, has created public fear, according to a United Daily News report.
People have traditionally jokingly referred to Taichung City as the “Gotham City” of Taiwan, because of the prevalence of organized crime there. Recently, New Taipei City is being referred to as “New Gotham City” on social media.
At 9:30pm tonight police will begin raiding KTVs, massage parlors, billiard rooms, and other suspect businesses. Prosecutors in New Taipei City, Taipei City, Shihlin, and Keelung have issued 71 search warrants for tonight’s raids.
New Taipei City Police Chief Hu will personally lead raids in Sanchong City. Other hotbeds of gang-crime targeted in tonight’s raids include Hsintien.