The Constitutional Court will hold the eighth defense hearing for the impeachment trial of President Park Geun-hye on Monday.
At this rate, in which two to three trials are held each week, some predict that the Court can reach a conclusion as early as late February.
Park Hyo-jung has more.
In the eighth defense proceeding for the impeachment of the president, former Vice Minister of Culture and Sports Kim Jong, former co-head of the Creative Economy Initiative, and Vice President Lee Seung-chul of the Federation of Korea Industries will be present.
Kim and Cha will be questioned for abusing their influence over arts and sports, while Lee will be questioned on fundraising for the Mir and K Sports Foundations.
At today’s proceeding, the Constitutional Court is highly likely to discuss the selection of additional witnesses and plan for the overall schedule of the impeachment trial.
The witness interrogations of former Minister of Culture and Sports Yoo Jin-ryong, former director of The Blue K Ko Young-tae and former department head of The Blue K Ryu Sang-young are planning to take place in two days. Once additional witnesses to summon are confirmed, it will mean that the time of decision will come into sight.
Lawyers predict that if the Constitutional Court holds two to three trials a week like this, the last defense proceeding could take place in mid-February, and it could make a final decision as early as late February.
This calculation is derived from the impeachment trial of the late President Roh Moo-hyun, in which the write-up of the decision took about 15 days.
Pursuant to the Constitution, which stipulates that a presidential election must take place within 60 days of impeachment, an election should take place in late April or early May.
In particular, if the decision on acceptance is made before the end of the special prosecution’s term in late February, there is a possibility that President Park will be subject to a compulsory investigation.
In contrast, if the Constitutional Court denies the impeachment bill, the president will return to her post, and the presidential election will take place in December as previously scheduled.
Park Hyo-jung reporting for Yonhap News TV.
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