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[Editorial] An Inmate Interrogated As Detective

Posted August. 07, 2002 22:11,   


The evasion scandal concerning the sons of Grand National Party’s presidential candidate Lee Hui-chang has been pushed into the corner. Kim Kil-boo, the former head of the Military Manpower Administration, made a surprising statement “An inmate acted as a detective.” In addition, candidate Lee has argued that there was no wrongdoing and risked his political career. Thus, the outcome of the pending investigation will deal a megaton impact on the politicians and turn some politicians’ careers into disaster. The Prosecutors’ Office itself will not be able to avoid getting mired into this scandal unless it successfully disputes Kim’s allegations.

The Prosecution should first determine whether Kim’s allegation is true or not. Kim Kil-boo alleges that Kim Dae-up interrogated him in a prosecutor’s office. The Prosecutors’ Office dismissed the allegation just saying that Kim Dae-up might have made statements or participated in the interrogation as a material witness. But, Kim Kil-boo’s allegations contain too detailed information to be dismissed as just an allegation. Kim Kil-boo, for example, said, “Kim Dae-up in plain clothes acted as a detective and interrogated me several times.” In short, the Prosecution’s explanation is much less persuasive than Kim Kil-boo’s assertion. Early January of this year when the alleged interrogation took place, Kim Dae-up was an inmate serving his term for fraud. It is weird to imagine that an inmate performed the tasks of a detective. Normally, the Prosecution would have hit the gasket in response.

The scandal involving the sons of candidate Lee has already been taken advantaged of for partisan purposes. That is why the current investigation should not be dominated and manipulated by the political calculation. It is also legitimate to distinguish the accusation war by politicians aiming at the upcoming presidential election and the investigation by the Prosecution aiming at realizing justice. If the Prosecutors’ Office sincerely intends to find out the truth, it should not hesitate to clear the doubts regarding its own conduct.

If it transpires that the Special Division 1, which now is in charge of the pending investigation, really allowed Kim then an inmate to wear plain clothes and to interrogate or help interrogate, the current case should be reassigned. It is doubtful that the Prosecution would bring the full justice to the person who it has once used as its informant. It should also be made clear that who in the Prosecution decided to utilize Kim Dae-up.