Senior S. Korean prosecutor indicted on corruption charges

AP News
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Posted: Jul 29, 2016 2:13 PM
Senior S. Korean prosecutor indicted on corruption charges

SEOUL, South Korea (AP) — South Korean prosecutors on Friday indicted a fellow senior prosecutor for allegedly pocketing millions of dollars from shady stock transaction deals with an online game maker.

Jin Kyung-joon, who holds a rank of vice minister, faces charges including bribery and violating the law on financial transactions, prosecutor Lee Keum-ro announced in a televised news conference. Jin became the most senior prosecutor to be arrested last week.

Corruption scandals involving high-profile figures routinely take place in South Korea, one of Asia's leading economies that became a liberal democracy in the late 1980s after decades of dictatorships.

Jin allegedly took 420 million won ($374,830) from the founder of Nexon and bought unlisted company shares before selling them back to the company at a much higher price. Prosecutors accused Lee of using the profits to purchase shares of Nexon Japan and sold them again for 12.6 billion won ($11 million) last year.

Jin also allegedly received a luxury sedan and 50 million won ($44,620) for personal travel expenses from Nexon founder Kim Jungju.

In a brief encounter with reporters three days before his arrest, Jin said he committed "wrong behavior" but didn't' elaborate. There were no fresh comments from him since he was put in a detention facility.

Prosecutors on Friday also indicted the Nexon founder saying he expected to get help from Jin in possible legal cases involving his company. Kim issued a statement Friday saying "I lower my head and apologize."

Nexon, known for hit games such as "MapleStory" and "Dungeon & Fighter," has about 300 million users in about 150 countries, according to Nexon officials. Kim is one of South Korea's richest men with an estimated wealth of 4 trillion won ($3.5 billion).