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Court Upholds Death Penalty by Narrow Margin

Posted February. 26, 2010 07:23,   


The Constitutional Court yesterday upheld the constitutionality of the death penalty in a narrow 5-4 decision.

The court ruled against a 72-year-old convict who had challenged capital punishment. The man was sentenced to death for killing two young couples on his boat in 2007 off the coast of Boseong County, South Jeolla Province.

The close verdict is expected to stir controversy over certain articles among the court’s justices. The court had ruled the death penalty constitutional in 1996 in a 7-2 decision.

The Constitutional Court said, “Article 110, Section 4 of the Constitution says a military tribunal can order the death sentence in a state of emergency, so the death sentence is an indirectly acknowledged penalty rule in the Constitution. It is more effective for realizing societal justice to prevent crime and to take appropriate action than a life sentence.”