Posted October. 27, 2009 07:54,
Disgraced cloning scientist Hwang Woo-suk yesterday was sentenced to two years in prison with a stay of execution for three years for embezzlement and trading egg cells.
Handing out the sentence three years and five months after his indictment, the Seoul Central Court found the former Seoul National University professor guilty for embezzling 835 million won (700,000 U.S. dollars), including research expenses from the government, and trading egg cells.
The court cleared him of fraud charges, however, saying, Though Hwang partially participated in the fabrication of research papers, he did not intentionally deceive donors, including corporations, to embezzle money.
Hwang embezzled a considerable amount of money by using borrowed name and false tax accounts. Also, his practice of purchasing egg cells from women violated the Bioethics and Safety Act even if he did so for scientific research.
On Hwangs fabricated papers, the ruling said, Hwang participated in manipulating eight parts of his papers released in 2004 and 2005. For example, he released false pictures of teratoma in his papers. We consider, however, that Hwang put his forecast, not the hard data that gained through research, in the paper, since he was pressured to become the worlds first scientist to cultivate stem cells after being convinced that his research was successful.