Posted November. 17, 2004 23:03,
The Central Investigation Department (CID) of the Supreme Public Prosecutors Office, headed by Park Sang-gil, has discovered that Hanhwa Group had purchased additional bonds of about one billion won on top of the eight billion won worth of bonds that was uncovered in the previous investigation into the election funds. CID is probing into the details of the transaction and how it was spent.
The prosecution also obtained information and is investigating some of the leading construction companies for lobbying the members of the Assembly with cash and other goods before, as well as after, the presidential election.
A high official of the prosecution said, An investigation is being done to find out whether Hanhwa Group used the bonds purchased over August and September of 2002 as funds to lobby the politicians in the process of acquiring Korea Life Insurance in September of the same year.
The previous investigation into election fund proved that Hanhwa purchased eight billion won worth of bonds and that it gave five billion to the election campaign of both the opposition and the government parties and one billion to the former representative of the Grand National Party, Suh Chung-won. Now, however, new information has revealed that the total bonds purchased by Hanhwa at the time was worth nine billion won instead of eight.
The prosecution is also tracking the whereabouts of two billion out of the previous total of eight billion won that the president of Hanhwa Group, Kim Seung-yuhn, allegedly gave out on a loan for personal reasons.
Korea Life Insurance was sorted out as an insolvent financial institution after the financial crisis, and the government decided to sell the company through the Public Fund Oversight Committee to Hanhwa Group after putting 3.5 trillion won of public funds into it.
Regarding the issue, Hanhwa Group said, The prosecutions investigation seems to be a measure to confirm that the parts that were not as thoroughly looked through during the election funds investigation, and added, There were incessant rumors about Hanhwas acquisition of Korea Life Insurance but they are all groundless.