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Prosecutors Searching for Mastermind of Deadly Protest

Posted January. 24, 2009 05:52,   


Prosecutors yesterday said they are searching for the chairman of the National Council of Victims of Forced Evictions for his alleged role in the deadly clash that killed six Tuesday.

They said they secured testimony that Nam Gyeong-nam, 55, was deeply involved in a protest against a redevelopment project in Seoul`s Yongsan district.

Nam is also sought by police for his alleged involvement in another sit-in strike, and apparently led Tuesday`s protest from planning to execution, prosecutors said.

Nam and some 40 council members are known to have come Friday last week to teach Yongsan residents to be evicted how to form task groups to occupy a building, such as entering the roof, the construction of the observation tower, and defending the building against police.

Prosecutors said Nam was at the scene of the clash to orchestrate the sit-in strike at Namildang Building Monday.

They are tracing his bank accounts to see if Nam received money in return for helping council members and evictees stage the violent protest.

A prosecutor said Nam is the sole council member to be found directly involved in the case, but the probe will expand if more evidence is found in the investigation.

myzodan@donga.com dawn@donga.com