A teacher convicted of over a thousand counts of rape and sexual assault on his pupils has been sentenced to 4613 years in prison, only to have the sentence reduced by 4583 years on a technicality.
The 46-year-old teacher, himself married and a father, operated a cram school in the Taiwanese city of Taichung.
There he took advantage of girls as young as 11 by luring them into basement “personal guidance” sessions and taking them to isolated spots in the school’s minibus, subjecting them to his attentions in groups and on a daily basis for a 4 year period.
He would offer them small payments and gifts to help keep them quiet, as well as intimidating them with threats of being arrested or taken from their parents, but eventually one of his victims approached the authorities.
Police say a total of 12 girls were raped 267 times and indecently assaulted a further 746 times, for a total of 1013 counts of sexual predation.
The man’s initial arrest and conviction saw him sentenced to 30 years, the maximum possible under the circumstances; he also faces civil suits.
After the defence appealed the sentence, the higher court was so disgusted by the gravity of his crimes and his lack of contrition that they decided to sentence him for each individual charge, leading to a sentence of 4613 years and 10 months.
However, this was even more pointless than is usual with such farcically long sentences – the maximum possible sentence was still 30 years, resulting in an impressive effective reduction of 4583 years and 10 months.
Both the sentence and the reduction are actually only the second highest ever handed down by Taiwanese judges – a father who repeatedly raped his daughter apparently managed 4739 years and a similar reduction.