Posted July. 31, 2008 08:48,
Early last month when waves of Koreans hit the streets to protest against the import of American beef, a group of protesters sat down on the road, blocking it, when police tried to disband them.
The authorities arrested them for various violations including disturbing the peace.
But this brought no fear. Calling the arrest a caged hen tour, referring to the police buses protected with steel nets, they pleaded with other citizens to voluntary join them on the tour.
At that time, posts were written on some Web sites teaching citizens how they, too, could enjoy the tour.
The district attorneys office, however, decided to turn the joy ride into a hellish experience.
It announced yesterday that it would indict 935 of the 1,045 protesters, who were originally apprehended and later released.
A source close to the investigation said, We will indict serious protesters on bail. Minor violators will be fined.
The prosecution has set forth several criteria to determine the fine amount for each type of misdemeanor such as illegal occupation of roads, damage to public assets, and physical attacks of officers.
If an individual is found guilty of illegally occupying a road, for example, they are fined up to 10 million won. Usually, however, 1 million to 3 million won is imposed.
An up to 1 million won fine is imposed on those who organize protests after sunset and up to half a million won for those who participate in them.
Thus, the 900 caged hen tourists may have to cough up a lot of money for their flirtations.