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Infamous thief nabbed in Tokyo

Posted January. 05, 2001 19:37,   


Once celebrated criminal Cho Se-Hung is facing trial in Japan after his arrest on burglary charges in Tokyo, it was learned here this week.

The Korean Embassy in Japan and Japanese police said Friday that he broke into three homes in the Shibuya district of Tokyo on Nov. 24 and was caught by Japanese police while stealing watches and radios.

During his attempt to resist police using a knife, he was shot in the upper part of his right arm by an officer.

Without producing a passport, the 62-year-old one-time big wheel of Korea's criminal underground identified himself as Koh Yang-Bin when he was arrested. Korean police authorities received from the Japanese police, through the Interpol channel on Dec. 24, a portrait and fingerprints of the suspect. Korean police revealed his identity as Cho on Friday.

Japanese police on Dec. 15 booked Cho on an array of charges, including violation of domicile, interference in the execution of official duties and violation of the law on weapons control. Burglary and other related charges will likely be added upon further inquiry.

Immediately after the arrest, Japanese police meant to include an attempted murder count in the belief that he tried to kill Japanese officers, but later dropped the charge when writing up the indictment.

Lee Young-Ee yes202@donga.com