The Korean society is in major shock after a series of contracted murders in which a family head in his 30s hired a hit man through an internet community site to murder his family.
People point out that despite the increase in the number of contracted murders, a countermeasure against this is not in place.
Easy in Plotting a Crime-
Requesting a murder or committing the murder by someones request totaled six cases over the last six months alone.
The internet community or agents with no permits are usually offered murder requests. Sometimes, a person requests a murder to his/her acquaintance.
It was in the middle of last December when Kim (29), who got a contract for a family murder from one family head, opened an internet community for contract work. Until the beginning of January 2005, he received three murder or violence requests.
If people type killer, solution, request, hit man (solver), or murder contract into the search box of the internet portal site, they can find more than 10 agents in the internet community. Each internet community is attracting clients with its we can do anything slogan (phrase) and providing its telephone number and e-mail address.
After a reporting team of the Dong-A Ilbo joined the community and looked into what was happening there, it found that some netizens exchanged their methods of asking for a contract. One netizen even advised through instant messenger, saying, A person can obtain a variety of information such as costs for each method, if he/she informs of the target of the crime in advance, and, Be cautious if a contractor demands a relatively low price as it can be a swindle.
Scores of comments for recommendation of agents are on the search corner (section) of another internet portal site.
In these comments, some replies are, According to the customers wishes, we can perfectly solve whatever a customer wants. Solving a problem, find a happy life
Despite a high level of risk, contractors get involved in criminal activity because they can earn a huge amount of money. Kim, who was caught by police this time, received about eight million won only a month after opening his community.
Some agents also easily become involved in some lucrative cruel crimes.
Major Problems of the Police-
Even if a murder contract through the internet is realized, the internet community is only used for first contact. More specific plots are made through e-mails or telephone calls.
For this, its virtually hard for the police to track down customers and contractors individually.
Another problem lies in the situation in which advertising of murder contract through an internet community or bargaining such as how much per each murder is not included in the criminal category.
The police is concerned that it cant punish those involved in murder contracts unless a target of the murder is specific.
An official of the Cyber Crime Investigation division of the Seoul Metropolitan Police Agency said that though each case has its own characteristics, its difficult to investigate all of the communities, and some students open internet communities for fun.
Each internet portal site is also at a loss on mushrooming internet communities.
Portal sites say that no matter how intensive the monitoring they conduct, banning the word murder on their sites, its virtually impossible to prevent crime-related communities from opening in the dozens even within a day.