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  HOME | Business & Economy (Click here for more)

South Korean Justice Ministerís House Raided over Corruption Allegations

SEOUL Ė South Koreaís prosecution on Monday raided the house of the countryís new justice minister as part of an investigation for alleged corruption offenses involving him and his family.

The investigators searched Cho Kukís residence in southern Seoul in search of evidence of allegations that Choís wife falsified documents to enable their daughter to get admission into a medical school, Yonhap news agency reported.

The prosecution believes both Cho and his wife could have tried to destroy evidence regarding this forgery.

In August, the prosecution raided around 20 buildings in connection with this alleged crime and also with investments by Choís family in a private equity fund that could have benefited from the politicianís influence.

In mid-2017, when Cho was the presidentís senior secretary for civil affairs, this fund invested in a small lighting manufacturer, of which it became a majority shareholder and whose value suddenly skyrocketed after obtaining several public contracts.

Many political parties strongly objected to Choís appointment earlier this month as the new justice minister on account of the prosecutionís accusations.

Cho has rejected all the allegations and many believe that the prosecution has undertaken a witch hunt against him, as the former presidential secretary is considered the architect of the plan to reform the prosecutorís office, which involves wresting powers from this body in favor of the police.

His appointment has dragged down South Korean President Moon Jae-inís popularity to the lowest levels since he came to power in mid-2017.

According to the latest surveys, only about 40 percent of South Koreans approve of Moon, whose political capital has already been worn down this year by the countryís poor economic situation and deteriorating ties with North Korea.

 

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