Go to contents

`Arrest Warrant Likely for Ex-Pres. Roh MH`

Posted May. 02, 2009 18:19,   


The Supreme Prosecutors’ Office yesterday is known to have decided on an arrest warrant for former President Roh Moo-hyun. Roh is suspected of taking six million U.S. dollars from his key financial supporter and Taekwang Industry CEO Park Yeon-cha.

A prosecutor said, “Park said he sent one million dollars in June 2007 and an additional five million dollars in February last year, following Roh’s orders. We’ve also found evidence supporting Park’s statement. When considering the principle of equity, prosecutors will have no choice but to seek an arrest warrant for Roh since they usually do so for suspects in bribery cases.”

The investigation team dealing with Roh’s case will report to Prosecutor General Lim Chae-jin this weekend. Lim will decide whether to seek an arrest warrant for Roh or indict him without restraint after talks with chief prosecutors of the Supreme Prosecutors’ Office and the High Public Prosecutors` Office early next week.

A portion of the one million dollars sent to Roh’s former presidential secretary Jung Sang-moon by Park was sent to Roh’s son Gun-ho and daughter Jeong-yeon, both of whom were in the United States. According to prosecutors, Roh’s wife Kwon Yang-sook asked a third party to send more than 300,000 dollars to the accounts of her son and daughter between 2006 and 2007.

Prosecutors also said most of the money was sent to the accounts of Roh’s children after June 2007, when Park sent one million dollars to Jung.

Prosecutors are mulling whether to summon Kwon again or ask her to fill out a written questionnaire on how she got the money and how the one million dollars was spent.

In questioning Thursday, Roh said, “I will explain how the one million dollars was spent as soon as possible.”

After the investigation, tensions between Roh and prosecutors have further mounted. Roh’s former chief of staff Moon Jae-in, who has defended the case for Roh, said yesterday, “Prosecutors seemed to fail to obtain phone records of Park and Roh. If they cannot find evidence backing Park’s statement, the statement will not be trusted.” In response, Hong Man-pyo of the Supreme Prosecutors’ Office said, “It is understandable that Moon, as Roh’s lawyer, made such remarks.”

In the meantime, prosecutors will launch full-fledged investigations into Sejoong Namo Tour Chairman Chun Shin-il, suspected of being involved in lobbying activities for Park, incumbent lawmakers, former and incumbent heads of local governments, judges, prosecutors and high-ranking police officers, who are suspected of receiving illegal money from Park.

verso@donga.com dnsp@donga.com