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Prosecution chief denies news report on extramarital child

Prosecutor General Chae Dong-wook (Yonhap News)
Prosecutor General Chae Dong-wook (Yonhap News)
The chief prosecutor on Friday denied a news report as "groundless" that he has a child born out of an extramarital affair.

Chosun Ilbo, the country's most influential daily, reported that Prosecutor General Chae Dong-wook has a son who was born in 2002. It claimed Chae first met the mother of the child in 1999.

"I've never heard of that," Chae told reporters.

Chae and his wife have a daughter.

He says that given the timing of the report there seems to be an intention to sway the prosecution over various ongoing politically sensitive investigations and trials.

One of them is the probe into the state intelligence agency's alleged meddling into the last presidential election.

State prosecutors have recently indicted Won Sei-hoon, a former chief of the National Intelligence Service (NIS), and Seoul police chief Kim Yong-pan for their alleged roles in the high-profile election scandal.

Sources say, however, the unusually strong measures against a former intelligence chief may have discomforted those in power with opposition lawmakers and civic groups in protest calling on President Park Geun-hye to do more to unveil the truth about the case and reform the NIS.

"As the prosecutor general, I'll strive to fulfill my duty in the prosecution according to the law and principles while firmly dealing with every bit of attempts to sway the prosecution," he said.

Chae passed the bar exam in 1982 and assumed the top post in the prosecution this April. (Yonhap News)