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  • The mother said she had been taking care of her child for more than four decades
  • Taipei's Social Welfare department said that the family was not socioeconomically disadvantaged
  • There were no indications of mistreatment or abuse in the home, authorities say

An elderly mother in Taiwan admitted to authorities that she killed her polio-stricken son as she was already too old to care for him.

Police officers in Taipei's Songshan District received a distress call from a Filipino caregiver at around 7 a.m. local time Friday about a 52-year-old man with the surname Lin who died in his residence, Taiwan News reported.

The police found Lin, who suffered from severe polio, in bed without any vital signs. His 79-year-old mother, whose name was not disclosed, was by his side weeping at the loss of her child.

However, upon checking, the officers found that Lin's nose and mouth were both covered with duct tape, which caused him to asphyxiate. When they asked the mother, she immediately admitted to murdering her son, UDN reported.

When asked about her motive, she said that she can no longer properly care for her son due to her advanced age. She also said that the burden of caring for her ill child had been exhausting for her physically and mentally, and in desperation, she chose to take her son's life.

According to reports, Lin had contracted polio early in his teens, and his mother had taken care of him for more than four decades.

However, the Department of Social Welfare (DOSW) in Taipei in a statement said that the family involved was not socioeconomically disadvantaged and that Lin, being a permanently disabled person, received a 6,000 yuan ($863) allowance from the city government to assist with his medical expenses.

DOSW also said that social workers from their department regularly call and visit Lin to talk to his family members and check on his condition, but they never saw any sign of mistreatment or abuse at home.

Aside from the mother, Lin's 90-year-old father, an older brother, a sister-in-law and the foreign caregiver also live at the home.

The Bureau of Social Affairs said records showed that the older brother hired a foreign nurse to take care of Lin so he wouldn't need further care from anyone in the family. The brother had become the point person of the government when following up on his condition.

Police are currently holding the mother in detention while further investigation is being conducted.

The country's Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault Prevention Center also intervened in the case, per UDN.

There has been no information released on whether the mother would be charged with murder.