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CIO launches probe into spy chief over alleged meddling in presidential election politics

All News 11:17 October 06, 2021

SEOUL, Oct. 6 (Yonhap) -- The state anti-corruption investigation office on Wednesday began a probe into National Intelligence Service Director Park Jie-won over allegations of political meddling ahead of the March presidential race.

The Corruption Investigation Office for High-ranking Officials (CIO) announced that it booked Park on Tuesday on charges of allegedly violating the National Intelligence Service Act and the Public Official Election Act.

Park has been accused by Yoon Seok-youl, former prosecutor general and a leading presidential contender of the main opposition People Power Party (PPP), and his campaign team of colluding with two others in tipping off online news outlet Newsverse for a supposed series of hit pieces on Yoon.

The outlet has reported a series of stories alleging that a prosecutor previously under Yoon secretly asked the PPP, just before the general elections in April 2020, to file a complaint against three pro-government figures for their alleged involvement in damning news reports about Yoon's wife.

In a related but separate case, a team prosecutors and investigators from the CIO also raided the office of PPP Rep. Jeong Jeom-sig of the PPP. Jeong is suspected of having handled the draft of the complaint while serving as chief of the PPP's legal advisory team at the time.

This file photo shows National Intelligence Service Director Park Jie-won. (Yonhap)

hague@yna.co.kr
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