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Customs officials search Korean Air headquarters

All Headlines 14:42 April 23, 2018

SEOUL, April 23 (Yonhap) -- South Korea's customs service said Monday it has carried out a search of Korean Air Lines Co.'s headquarters over suspicions that the family members of Chairman Cho Yang-ho sneaked luxury goods into South Korea without paying duties, officials said.

Officials of the Korea Customs Service (KCS) also checked the airline's office at Gimpo International Airport as well as a Seoul office of Hanjin Travel widely known to be used by Cho Hyun-min, the former senior vice president at Korean Air and the chairman's youngest daughter.

The latest raid came amid allegations by some disgruntled former and current Korean Air employees that the chairman's wife and their children brought in luxury goods from overseas via their airline without properly declaring them with customs.

On Saturday, customs officials searched the headquarters of the national flag carrier and the homes of the chairman and his three children.

Smuggling is an offense that carries a maximum sentence of five years in prison and fines up to 10 times the duties evaded.

Korean Air chairman Cho Yang-ho, meanwhile, offered a public apology over the mounting public outrage over his daughter Cho Hyun-min.

Cho Hyun-min is accused of having thrown water in the face of an ad agency manager during a meeting last month.

She is the younger sister of Cho Hyun-ah, who gained global notoriety for the "nut rage" incident in 2014.

Last month, Cho Hyun-ah made a comeback as the head of the hotel affiliate of South Korea's largest air carrier and logistics giant, but she and her younger sister have been sacked by their father in light of the latest suspicions that they may have abused their positions to sidestep the law.

This file photo shows Korean Air's main office in southwestern Seoul. (Yonhap)

entropy@yna.co.kr
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