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Constitutional Court chooses acting chief to lead Park's impeachment trial

All Headlines 10:31 February 01, 2017

SEOUL, Feb. 1 (Yonhap) -- The Constitutional Court on Wednesday chose Justice Lee Jung-mi as its acting chief to lead the impeachment trial of President Park Geun-hye.

Lee, 54, took over after Chief Justice Park Han-chul retired a day earlier. Lee has served the longest among the remaining eight justices, with her six-year term set to expire on March 13.

Before retirement, former chief Park called for a decision on the president's impeachment before March 13 to prevent a "distorted" ruling caused by an additional vacancy on the bench.

The president was impeached by parliament in December over a massive influence-peddling scandal centered on her friend Choi Soon-sil.

Park's ouster requires the consent of at least six justices by early June.

A formal successor to Park Han-chul can only be appointed by the president following parliamentary confirmation.

This photo, provided by the Constitutional Court, shows acting court President Lee Jung-mi. (Yonhap)

hague@yna.co.kr
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