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Court upholds 6-year sentence in hostess murder

Posted March. 09, 2001 18:19,   


The Supreme Court Friday upheld the six-year prison sentence handed down by a lower court in the case of Cpl. Christopher McCarthy, a 23-year-old U.S. soldier who was indicted without physical detention on charges of killing a hostess last year at a bar in Itaewon, central Seoul.

Cpl. McCarthy had avoided detention by Korean police under the Status of Forces Agreement (SOFA), which bans physical restraint of American soldiers before a final judgment. But with Supreme Court ruling, procedures will begin to formally arrest and imprison him. In its written judgment, the court said, ``It is hard to accept the argument that the murder was accidental, based on the fact that the accused applied so much pressure in strangling the victim that he broke her neck.``

Cpl. McCarthy was indicted February last year for strangling the bar hostess to death after she refused to have sex with him. He escaped from custody ahead of a court session on Apr. 28 last year but was later captured by the American military police.