Date
19 August 2017
South Korea's ousted leader Park Geun-hye leaves a prosecutor's office in Seoul on March 22. Credit: Reuters
South Korea's ousted leader Park Geun-hye leaves a prosecutor's office in Seoul on March 22. Credit: Reuters

S Korea prosecutors seek arrest warrant for ousted president

South Korean prosecutors plan to seek an arrest warrant for Park Geun-hye, the nation’s former president who has been accused of corruption and abuse of power.

Announcing the plan Monday, the prosecutors’ office said it fears Park could try to destroy evidence related to her case, and that an arrest would be justified under the circumstances.

“The case is very grave as the suspect has demonstrated acts of abuse of power by making companies give money and infringing on the freedom of corporate management by using powerful position and authority as president,” Reuters quoted the office as saying in a statement.

Park, who is currently free from detention, was questioned for 14 hours by prosecutors last week.

She vacated the presidential palace after a constitutional court upheld this month a parliamentary impeachment.

Park has been accused of colluding with a friend, Choi Soon-sil, to pressure big businesses to donate to two foundations set up to back the former president’s policy initiatives.

She and Choi have denied wrongdoing.

If the court grants the arrest warrant, prosecutors will have up to 20 days to continue investigations, by which time they must file charges against her.

The ousted president could face more than 10 years in jail if convicted of receiving bribes from bosses of big conglomerates, including Samsung Group chief Jay Y. Lee, in return for favors.

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