Posted February. 09, 2015 07:19,
Appellate trial has confirmed the punishment previously delivered by the army disciplinary committee to a male army officer, who got demotion by one rank for the first time since establishment of the army, after sexually harassing and molesting a female subordinate.
In the appellate trial recently held in the Ministry of National Defense on the sex discipline violation case of a lieutenant colonel known as A of unnamed Army division, the review panel upheld the previous ruling of demotion to a lower rank, said a source inside the Army.
The military officer in question has sent flirty text messages to a first lieutenant in the same division several times since April 2014, and committed sexual molestation and harassment including touching hands under excuse of reading her palm. After the female subordinate officer reported to the military, the lieutenant colonel received disciplinary punishment of demotion by one rank in December last year.
Against the disciplinary act from the division, the lieutenant colonel lodged an appeal saying the punishment was too severe, which was rejected in the appellate review. An Army official explained the reason for rejection, saying, This sex discipline violation case requires more strict punishment since the lieutenant colonel has abused his position as a direct superior who has authority over personnel affairs of the first lieutenant. When the defense minister makes a final approval, the lieutenant colonel is expected to be at a disadvantage including dishonorable discharge and reduction of military pension.
Insiders and outsiders of the military see this case as an opportunity to exercise "zero tolerance principle" against the sex crimes in the military. This case reflects the military leaderships strong will not to allow anti-humanitarian sex crime inside the military in 2015, the year when the number of female soldiers increased up to 10,000.
In addition, some analyze that the discipline action of this case may affect a recent series of sex crimes committed by the military leadership including division and brigade commanders. The military aims to eradicate sex crimes in barracks by giving a hard lesson that anyone who commits sexual assaults in the military will face humility and end up with being thrown away from the military regardless of the rank, said a high-level military official.