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A Question On Five Billion Won From The GNP

Posted December. 19, 2003 23:27,   


The Central Investigation Department of the Supreme Public Prosecutor’s Office is investigating whether the Grand National Party (GNP)’s central office construction cost of five billion won given to Kumho Industrial earlier this month is a part of an illegal election fund or not.

The prosecution is tracking the money’s source, focusing on the fact that after the presidential election, the GNP paid five billion won out of the total construction cost of 7.7 billion won that it defaulted on for five years. An account used to withdraw the money was also opened immediately after the election.

However, investigation planning official Moon Hyo-nam said, “Although we found five billion won paid for the Grand National Party’s central office construction in the process of tracking down the party’s account, it is not yet confirmed as illegal election funds.”

The GNP also explained itself, saying, “We received 14.3 billion won as supplementary funds for the presidential election from the National Election Commission on July 2 and paid five billion to Kumho Industrial three days later.”

In connection with Sun & Moon’s suspicious lobbying of the political world, the prosecution is also investigating the full context of the former vice president of Sun & Moon Group Kim seoung-lae’s claim recently submitted to the court that he acted as an agent in holding a meeting between then presidential candidate Roh Moo-hyun and chairman of Sun & Moon Group, Moon Byung-uk, and met Han In-ok, wife of the former GNP president Lee Hoi-chang.

According to the statement, Mr. Kim claimed, “I met and talked with candidate Roh and his close aid Lee Kwang-jae respectively for around 30 minutes. I also prepared a lunch meeting between Mr. Roh and Mr. Moon where they spoke with each other for four hours.” He also said, “I spoke with Han In-ok for about an hour at a GNP political fund raising event on December 3, 2002.”

Mr. Lee’s side refuted this claim, saying, “Han In-ok, wife of Mr. Lee does not know Mr. Kim and they are considering taking legal action against him.”

On the other hand, the prosecution plans to indict the president’s long-time sponsors, Kang Keum-won, Chairman of Changsin Textile on December 21, Moon Byung-uk, chairman of Sun & Moon Group on December 22 and Choi Do-sul, the former presidential secretary for general affairs also on December 22.

The prosecution will summon lawmaker Kim Young-il of the GNP on December 29 and investigate whether he was involved in the process of receiving illegal campaign money.

Wi-Yong Jung Jin-Kyun Kil viyonz@donga.com leon@donga.com