Go to contents

Manipulation beyond incitement

Posted October. 08, 2021 07:32,   

Updated October. 08, 2021 07:32


Regarding the allegation of criminal complaint incitement, it was revealed that Kim Woong, a member of the People Power Party, told complainant Cho Sung-eun to complain about the lack of investigation, rather than simply presenting a bill of indictment, to make it look like the Supreme Prosecutors' Office received it reluctantly. Such communication between the two was from a phone conversation recording on Cho’s mobile phone recovered with digital forensics technology by the Corruption Investigation Office for High-ranking Officials. There are two recordings of a phone conversation made on April 3, 2020 when Kim sent a bill of indictment and reference materials regarding the ruling party’s figures via Telegram. Kim told Cho to go to the Seoul Southern District Prosecutors' Office, adding that it’s safer there, in a conversation that took place in the morning and later told her to submit the bill to the Supreme Prosecutors' Office in the afternoon.

The recording includes Kim, saying, “We will write it and send it to you,” “It should not look like it’s related to the prosecution,” and “I will talk to an officer at the Supreme Prosecutors' Office.” Why did Kim emphasize that it should look like it’s not related to the prosecution and that the bill should be submitted to the Supreme Prosecutors' Office yet it should look like the bill was received reluctantly? Who is ‘we’ he was referring to? You can’t help but suspect if the allegation was beyond simple incitement with Kim as an intermediary and involved some kind of planning by a group of people.

The image file of the bill of indictment includes a phrase ‘sent by Son Jun-sung.’ He is a prosecutor who assisted then-Prosecutor General Yoon Seok-youl as an investigation information policy officer at the Supreme Prosecutors' Office in April last year. According to the prosecutors’ investigation, there is no sign that the image file was forged later. Kim has raised suspicions by saying that he was contacted by prosecutor Son and sent the file at first and later changing his statement to that they must have called in advance after sending documents but he doesn’t recall having such a conversation. He is keeping his mouth closed about the recently revealed phone conversation. He might be hiding something, worrying about potential aftermath once the truths about the allegation come out.

Cho did not submit the bill of indictment but this is not the heart of the matter. In fact, a bill of indictment against Choe Kang-wook of the Open Democratic Party submitted by the People Power Party in August last year is similar to the bill that Cho received from Kim on April 8. The whole truths about the allegation will be revealed once the delivery path from Son to Kim to Cho, as well as connections to the August 2020 case, are uncovered. What’s critical is who wrote the bill. How a figure on the prosecution side was involved and whether Yoon had known about this or received a report before or after should be found out to determine whether this was a breach of state discipline, political maneuvering, or some prosecutors’ deviation. The allegation about Cho discussing the criminal complaint with Director of the National Intelligence Service Park Jie-won should also be thoroughly investigated.