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Police Get Arrest Warrant Guidelines

Posted June. 15, 2006 03:48,   


Prosecutors have prepared a united standard for arrest warrants request, which will be applied beginning June 15.

The Supreme Public Prosecutor’s Office revealed that standards for requesting arrest warrants, which were previously applied discretionally by local prosecutors’ offices, was established into a unified regulation for investigation under custody.

Now, prosecutors nationwide must follow this guidelines along with the Criminal Procedure Code (destruction of evidence, apprehension of flight) when deciding to request an arrest warrant.

This guideline divides crime into several categories to specify the subjects of arrest warrants.

The categories include general crimes, breach of public peace crimes, corruption crimes, and violence crimes. Conditions for requesting arrest warrants are decided depending upon the frequency of occurrence of the specific crimes in these categories.

In the case of traffic accidents, the amount of negligence, damage caused by the accident, and past crime records are elements deciding the request of an arrest warrant. In a serious case involving mortality and severely wounded, or in a case where the driver has been driving drunk, an arrest warrant will be requested.

Suspects accused of sexual harassment are also subject for arrest, including those who have harassed a minor of under 13, or a family member.

Among real estate speculators, those who sell an unregistered piece of real estate, or register a piece of real estate under someone else’s name with the intent of evading taxes are the subject of arrest warrants.

The general provisions of this regulation clearly state that under-custody investigation should be kept at a minimal level, and should not be overused according to the constitutional principle not to overly restrict basic human rights.

Restriction shares (the ratio of confined suspects compared to indicted suspects) is continually decreasing, from 4.2 percent in 2001, 4.0 percent in 2002, 3.7 percent in 2003, 3.2 percent in 2004, and 2.6 percent in 2005.

Tae-Hoon Lee jefflee@donga.com