[EDITORIALS]Indeed, a very strange caseDay by day, suspicions are snowballing about Kim Yeong-wan, who allegedly laundered 15 billion won ($12.5 million) that Hyundai Group said to have given Park Jie-won, the former Blue House chief of staff. Top police officials were involved in covering up the robbery that took place at Mr. Kim's residence, and Mr. Kim's record of overseas travels coincides with Mr. Park’s travels abroad -- four trips to arrange the 2000 inter-Korean summit. For 15 months, Mr. Kim concealed a robbery in which his loss was more than 10 billion won. We have trouble understanding why Mr. Kim, a former arms dealer, was involved in the summit plans.
The head of the Seoul Metropolitan Police Agency and National Police Agency investigation director covered up Mr. Kim's case by ignoring routine reporting channels and ordering unofficial probes into the robbery. A police lieutenant in the Blue House civil affairs office requested a quiet investigation, after which the National Police Agency chief of investigations ordered the Seoul Metropolitan Police Agency to keep the case quiet. Is the police an organization where superiors order around by their juniors?
Is it convincing that the investigation chief tried to conceal the robbery case on the request of a police lieutenant? Without high-ranking Blue House involvement, such a thing is impossible. The Blue House police lieutenant is reportedly close to Mr. Park. Thus, the police's announcement yesterday about the robbery cover-up seems like another attempt of concealment.
While senior officials were busy covering up the case, detectives and the robbery suspects were busy drinking at a sumptuous private party at a hotel. Can we still call them police? We demand that other government bodies, such as the prosecution, investigate the case and give us the truth.
Mr. Kim's role in the summit preparations and his bank account, holding nearly 7 billion won under a false name, must be investigated. We urge that a new independent counsel be named to clarify Mr. Kim's involvement in the cash transfer to the North and his connection to Mr. Park.
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