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Search of Lee Ki-myung’s Office Is Under Consideration

Posted May. 13, 2005 23:32,   


The prosecution is considering seizing and searching Lee Ki-myung’s house and office in a day or two. The investigators have gotten hold of circumstantial evidence that Lee, a chief sponsor of President Roh in the last presidential election, has been involved in the oil field business, while probing the suspicion that the Korea National Railroad (KoRail) invested in the development of a Russian oil field.

Special Investigation Department III (headed by Hong Mahn-pyo) of the Seoul District Prosecutor’s Office is in charge of the investigation. The department sees that it is highly probable that Lee is deeply involved in the scandal with Huh Mun-seok, a leading geologist (missing after leaving for Indonesia) in the oil field development.

However, Lee told a Dong-a Ilbo reporter in a phone interview, “I know nothing about the oil field development, and Huh’s departure has nothing to do with me.”

The prosecution secured a deposition of a concerned person that Kim Se-ho, the former Construction Vice Minister (and the head of the KoRail at the time of the development), met last July 22 Woori Bank governor Hwang Young-gi and employees of the National Intelligence Service’s (NIS) Daejeon branch. In fact, Kim Se-ho has been arrested on the charge of leading the development project.

It was on July 28 of the same year when former Vice Minister Kim asked a Woori Bank executive for a loan.

Summoning Governor Hwang and NIS employees for questioning is under consideration by the prosecution.

In response, the NIS and Woori Bank claimed, “There were NIS employees present on July 22, but no one mentioned a loan.”

Woori Bank contended in its own defense that “KoRail first applied for a loan on July 28 last year. The application was made by a deputy manager. Governor Hwang does not handle loans.”