중앙데일리

Wiretapping law gets legislature's approval

Dec 07,2001
The National Assembly passed 35 bills Thursday, including a revision of the Protection of Communications Secrets Act. It also passed three resolutions, including one on dispatching noncombat troops to support the U.S. war in Afghanistan.

The change to the communications privacy law requires law enforcement agencies to obtain permission from a court before eavesdropping on someone. If they fail to obtain permission within 36 hours the operation must be aborted. While prosecutors should lead wiretapping operations by the police, in urgent cases police can obtain prosecutors' consent post facto.

The Assembly also voted to require corporate restructuring firms to hire expert consultants and demand stricter qualifications for the firms' executives. It said the measures are aimed at strengthening the professionalism and transparency of the firms, which have been involved in a number of financial scandals.

People who bring unskilled foreign workers into Korea illegally may now be sentenced to a maximum of three years in prison. They could also be fined a maximum of 10 million won ($7,900). The period within which foreigners can seek asylum in Korea was lengthened from 60 days to a year.

Using someone's credit card without permission is now punishable with a maximum prison sentence of 10 years or a maximum fine of 20 million won.

Only general hospitals will be allowed to collect blood donations beginning next July in order to streamline collections.

National and public university professors who obtain patents can now collect royalties, which had been paid to the national or regional government that subsidized their respective colleges.



by Kim Jung-ha




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