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Overnight Grilling of Ex-Pres. Roh Mulled

Posted April. 29, 2009 08:50,   


The Supreme Public Prosecutors’ Office plans to question former President Roh Moo-hyun well into the night if it runs out of time. Roh will appear for grilling tomorrow over his alleged role in a bribery scandal.

Prosecutors yesterday decided to complete their probe into Roh faster by considering precedents of previous investigations into ex-presidents and protocol. Thus they will likely continue questioning Roh until 2 to 3 a.m. Friday if necessary.

Justice Minister Kim Kyung-han told prosecutors, “While focusing the probe on unearthing the truth, prosecutors must make thorough preparations to ensure the safety of the former head of state and treat him with the proper manners.”

Prosecutors compiled more than 200 key questions to ask Roh categorized into issue type, including suspicions on the five million and one million U.S. dollars paid by Taekwang Industry CEO Park Yeon-cha plus additional questions in response to Roh’s expected answers.

In Daejeon, Kang Geum-won, Roh’s supporter and former chairman of the Busan-based Changshin Textile, was arrested yesterday on the charge of embezzling 30.5 billion won (22 million U.S. dollars) in company funds and from Cygnus Country Club in Chungju, North Chungcheong Province, and evading taxes worth 1.6 billion won (1.2 million dollars) since 2004.

Prosecutors excluded from Kang’s indictment the suspicion that he gave a billion won (737,000 dollars) to Ahn Hee-jung, a member of the main opposition Democratic Party’s supreme council, in violation of the Political Fund Act. Additional charges could be added on Kang if Ahn is summoned early next month and confirms the suspicions.

The Seoul Central District Court also issued a suspension of an arrest warrant for Chung Hwa-sam, Roh’s high school alumnus and former head of Zephyros Golf Club, until May 4. Jung was indicted for taking 2.9 billion won (2.1 million dollars) from Sejong Capital in connection with the sale of Sejong Securities to the National Agriculture Cooperative Federation.

The court said, “The execution of the warrant was suspended to allow Jung to attend his mother-in-law’s funeral.”

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