Go to contents

Prosecutors Not Likely to Disclose BBK Probe Results Until Presidential Candidate Registration Day

Prosecutors Not Likely to Disclose BBK Probe Results Until Presidential Candidate Registration Day

Posted November. 23, 2007 04:01,   


Seoul Central District Prosecutors` Office probing the BBK stock price manipulation scandal are not likely to announce their findings before November 26, the last day of presidential candidacy registration.

A high-level prosecutor said on November 22, “It is indeed impossible to release investigation outcomes before that day.”

Prosecutors plan to conclude the probe before November 25, but authentication of documents and other processes could delay the probe’s findings.

Prosecutors are expected to disclose the findings while filing charges against Kim Gyeong-jun on December 5, the day when his arrest warrant expires. But after election registration ends, the next steps in the legal process, such as charging a presidential candidate, will be difficult. The investigation results may not even be disclosed right away.

The special prosecutor team assigned to the probe has been analyzing a 10kg box of documents sent by Erica Kim, the older sister of Kim Gyeong-jun.

The investigation is known to be focusing on a photocopy of a Stock Purchase and Sale Agreement in English signed by LKe Bank and AM Papas, a paper company registered as a tax haven. LKe Bank was co-founded by Lee Myung-bak and Kim Gyeong-jun.

But prosecutors are planning to investigate the circumstances concerning why Kim has pushed for a settlement because the English document presented by Kim does not contain content about a backdoor agreement.

Kim’s mother, Kim Yeong-ae, is expected to arrive at Incheon International Airport on November 23 after departing Los Angeles on November 22.

Kim’s mother said before the departure, “The briefcase I am carrying contains the original agreement and press release given to reporters at the yesterday’s press conference.” When asked about the possibility of having a press conference in Korea, she said no.

Prosecutors are planning to verify the agreements, which she will bring tomorrow, in both English and Korean versions.

Erica Kim said on Tuesday, “The Korean version of the agreement stipulates BBK stocks owned by Lee.” But Lee’s presidential camp and then legal team in charge of writing agreements refuted that, saying, “There was only an English agreement, not a Korean version, at that time.”

needjung@donga.com verso@donga.com