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`Ex.-Pres.’ Brother Earned Big Money From Arcade`

Posted December. 01, 2008 03:38,   


Prosecutors yesterday said they secured testimony and evidence that the elder brother of former President Roh Moo-hyun accepted hundreds of millions won in bribes in return for influencing the sale of a securities company.

Roh Geon-pyeong is alleged to have taken a stake in a gambling arcade in Gimhae, South Gyeongsang Province, worth 300 million (204,220 U.S. dollars) to 400 million won (272,294 dollars) that he received in return for lobbying for the sale of the now-defunct Sejong Securities.

Prosecutors are tracing the bank accounts of those implicated in the scandal after concluding that Roh profited from his stake in the illegal gaming arcade “Rich Game Land” in Gimhae. The arcade was opened by Jeong Hwa-sam, a high school classmate of the former president who is now in custody, and Jeong’s younger brother with 800 million won (544,588 dollars) from three billion won (2.04 million dollars) worth of bribes.

The investigation could show that Roh Geon-pyeong might have earned more from the arcade than originally thought.

Prosecutors are scheduled to unofficially summon him today on his involvement, the exact amount he received, and how it was delivered. He will be sent home after questioning but an arrest warrant will likely be applied for afterwards.

Choi Jae-gyeong of the Supreme Public Prosecutors` Office said, “Since Jeong and his brother have been confirmed to have received lobbying funds, the combined amount of profits from the gambling business is an important factor in determining who went home with the money in the end.”

“The business began on July 6, 2006, and reportedly earned a net daily profit of 20 million won (13,614 dollars) on average in its first year.”

Prosecutors summoned Jeong’s other brother Chu-sam Saturday as a reference on the ownership structure of the gambling arcade and distribution and the exact amount of the profits.

They said they have almost completed tracing the bank accounts related to the three billion won (2.04 million dollars) the Jeong brothers received. The investigation found that the brothers deposited the money in several false-name bank accounts that later went through money laundering through the sale and resale of memberships at Zephyrus Golf Club, of which Jeong was CEO in 2006.

On the probe into Taekwang Industrial Chairman Park Yeon-cha, prosecutors said, “We have been analyzing accounting materials, selecting those to be summoned, and going over the summoning schedule. The investigation will begin full swing from Dec. 1.”

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