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Kang Jung-jo faces 'murky outlook' on return to Major League

Kang Jung-jo faces 'murky outlook' on return to Major League

Posted May. 19, 2017 07:19,   

Updated May. 19, 2017 07:37

For Pittsburg Pirates infielder Kang Jung-ho who was indicted of Driving under Influence (DUI), his return to the Major League seems far from feasible. Following the first trial, Kang lost his appeal against his conviction.

On Thursday, the Criminal Appeals Division-4 at the Seoul Central District Court dismissed Kang's appeal for a commutation, which requested that "if the imprisonment ruled at the original trial remains effective, the ruling will prohibit U.S. visa issuance and eventually block (Kang) from returning to the Major League." Against his appeal, Kang is under eight months of imprisonment with two years of probation. The court reaffirmed its original stance, judging that the court recognizes the seriousness of the crime, given that the defendant took no measures despite causing damage to the taxi and other vehicles on the opposite lane. Moreover, the defendant drank and drove again despite the past two DUIs. The court was left with no choice but to punish with the penalty, which commensurates with the original verdict. We honor our judgement made at the first trial.

On Dec. 2, 2016, Kang was summarily indicted with 15 million won of fine on charges of a hit-and-run case after crashing into a guard rail at Samsung Station crossroads in southern Seoul. Under the current Road Traffic Act, Kang was charged with DUI, as he showed blood alcohol content at 0.084 percent, and was eventually put on formal trial. Kang lost his driver's license under the "strike-out" rule, as he had been caught twice for DUIs in 2009 and 2011.

After the first trial, Kang was denied from receiving his visa from the U.S. embassy in Seoul, which regarded the issue as a grave one and was concerned with a possible recidivism. Until now, Kang had been all out to get his work visa through lawyers in Korea and immigration attorneys in the U.S. Pittsburg also expressed their full support so that the U.S. government will allow Kang to enter the American soil based on the premise of a lower monetary penalty. Nonetheless, the recent decision only dropped the possibility of a work visa for Kang. Furthermore, possibilities are high that the ruling made at the first and second trials will remain intact at the appeal to the Supreme Court.

Jae-Yeong Yoo elegant@donga.com · Oh-Hyuk Kwon hyuk@donga.com