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Former senior prosecutor arrested for lobbying scandal

All News 10:02 June 02, 2016

SEOUL, June 2 (Yonhap) -- State prosecutors on Thursday formally arrested a prosecutor-turned-lawyer accused of peddling influence for his client and evading taxes, as part of a probe into the snowballing corruption scandal that is rocking the country's legal establishment.

The Seoul Central District Court issued an arrest warrant for Hong Man-pyo over suspicions he received some 300 million won (US$251,000) from the chief of local cosmetics brand Nature Republic, Jung Woon-ho, to cover up his overseas gambling charges in August 2015.

Before the businessman was indicted in October, two separate investigations were launched into his gambling charges, but both ended without an indictment.

Last month, the Seoul High Court commuted Jung's original one-year prison term that he received from a lower court to eight months.

Hong is also accused of evading some 1 billion won in taxes by working without filing reports.

The 56-year-old has been denying allegations he unlawfully contacted his former colleagues to advocate for his client, while partially admitting to the tax evasion charges.

Hong was a prominent prosecutor investigating major corruption cases that involved the country's former presidents. He stepped down from office in 2011 and worked as a lawyer.

The Seoul district court also issued a writ to formally arrest the businessman Thursday. His jail term is scheduled to end Sunday.

Jung is suspected of embezzling some 14 billion won of company assets in early 2015.


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