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Arsonist to serve life in Daegu subway fire

Aug 07,2003
Kim Dae-han, 56, who started the subway fire in which 192 people perished and 147 were injured, was sentenced to life imprisonment yesterday.
“Mr. Kim’s crime deserves capital punishment,” the Daegu District Court said in pronouncing sentence. “But taking into account that he is remorseful and that he committed the crime while in an abnormal mental condition, the court decrees a life sentence.”
Some 30 bereaved families in the courtroom loudly protested the ruling, saying the punishment was too lenient.
The operators of the two subway cars where most of the victims died were convicted of negligent homicide. Choi Sang-yeol, 38, the driver of train No. 1080, will serve five years’ imprisonment; Choi Jeong-hwan, 32, who drove No. 1079, where the arsonist set the fire, will serve four years.


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