중앙데일리

English teachers arrested on drug charges

Sept 06,2007
Police are investigating 23 people, most of them foreigners who teach English here, for smoking marijuana and trafficking in the drug, the Seoul Metropolitan Police Agency announced yesterday.
The police detained three on trafficking charges: two Canadians, 28 and 30, and a Ghanaian, 34. They could be sentenced to 5 or more years in prison if convicted.
In addition, the police booked three Britons, five Canadians, 13 Americans and one Korean. The maximum penalty is a fine and 5 years in prison.
All 23, except for the Korean and the Ghanaian, are English instructors at hagwon, elementary schools or universities. The Korean is a girlfriend of one of the teachers.
“Some of the teachers were intoxicated while teaching students,” said Lim Chang-muk, an inspector at the agency. “Officially they made about 2 million won at schools, but they made as much as four times more outside of their regular jobs, which violates their E-2 visa guidelines.”
With an E-2 visa, foreigners can only work at the organization that sponsored them. Most of the foreign suspects hold an E-2 visa.
The suspects obtained marijuana and hashish from suppliers introduced through their colleagues, police said.
The police said they confiscated 620 grams (1.4 pounds) of marijuana worth 13 million won ($13,860) and 0.7 gram of hashish.


By Hwang Young-jin Staff Writer[yhwang@joongang.co.kr]


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