Go to contents

Police Officers Charged With Loan Sharking

Posted January. 01, 2008 03:24,   


Six policemen in Seoul are under investigation for allegedly lending large sums of money to an owner of a bar at high interest. The special investigation unit of Korea National Police Agency said yesterday that six superintendents and sergeants of the Seoul Metropolitan Police Agency and police stations in Gangnam area are currently under investigation.

After gaining an acquaintance with Mr. Kim, the owner of a bar at the “S” hotel located in Shinsa-dong, Gangnam, during bar crackdowns in 2005 and 2006, the policemen in question each lent 100 to 200 million won to Kim and had allegedly collected monthly interest reaching five to ten million won.

Considering the possibility that these policemen may have turned a blind eye to illegal prostitution at the bar in return for receiving high interest revenues reaching 60 to 120 million won every year, the police is reviewing whether to impose bribery charges on them.

However, the policemen under investigation have reportedly said, “We simply lent money for interest. We did not look out for the bar.”

On the same day, the police also summoned Lieutenant Oh on charges of paying bribes. In June 2005, he demanded Mr. Kim to pay a 20-million-won bribe to Cho Gwang-han, then auditor of Korea Gas Corporation and former presidential adviser for public relations and planning, in return for his promotion.

Oh said, “Although I accepted the call for a summons, I exercised my right to veto making a statement (because I deny any allegations). I will take legal countermeasures.”

Meanwhile, the police said it booked 30 to 40 people, including 10 public servants of fire stations and district offices, on charges of colluding with the bar at “S” hotel.

It also arranged for Interpol to search for Cho, who left the country on December 11 while he was being investigated on bribery allegations.