Police file warrant against prosecutor

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Police file warrant against prosecutor

Police have requested an arrest warrant for an incumbent prosecutor as he has not responded to police summons. The prosecutor is being sued by a police investigator for abuse of power and slander.

It is the first time in history that the police have filed an arrest warrant against an incumbent prosecutor. The prosecution, however, dismissed the request, once again dredging up the conflict over the revised jurisdiction for criminal investigation.

The Seongseo Police Precinct in Daegu said on Tuesday that they have requested a warrant for prosecutor Park Dae-beom, 37, from the Daegu Western District Prosecutors’ Office, at the Daegu District Prosecutors’ Office, but the prosecution dismissed the request hours after it was made.

“The request for the warrant didn’t fulfill the necessary conditions,” a spokesman of the prosecution said through a press release. “We see that Park berated the investigator strongly,but it is difficult to consider his actions as a violation of the law.”

The police complained that the prosecution is trying to protect a family member.
“It means that the prosecution doesn’t want the police to investigate the prosecutor,” a spokesman for the National Police Agency told the JoongAng Ilbo. “The police should be able to file warrants directly to courts like other advanced countries such as the U.S. and U.K.”

Currently, police only can request court-ordered warrants through the prosecution. The Seongseo police are considering re-requesting the warrant from the prosecution.

“We requested Park appear before the police three times since March, but he never showed up,” a spokesman of the Seongseo police told reporters.
“We judged that a confrontation between Park and the investigator is very necessary to reveal the truth.”

The police generally request an arrest warrant if a subject up for investigation doesn’t answer the summons three times consecutively. The police said Park only submitted a written statement after the first summons was made, in which he insisted that he never abused his power and defamed the investigator.

In mid-March, investigator Jeong Jae-wook, 29,?from the Milyang Police Precinct, filed a lawsuit against Park for abuse of power and slander.

In the complaint, Jeong insisted that the prosecutor had ordered the investigator not to expand his investigation into a CEO of a waste disposal corporation who was suspected of illegally burying industrial sludge in rice paddies for years in October last year.

Jeong, however, continued his investigation after securing evidence that showed the CEO’s attempt to cover up the case by bribing a local newspaper reporter with 84.5 million won ($75,141), but Park scaled back the prosecutors’ investigation after the CEO hired former prosecutors who had worked in the Changwon office to represent him.

By Park Sung-woo, Kwon Sang-soo [sakwon80@joongang.co.kr]
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