Two Saenuri lawmakers face graft summonses

By Korea Herald
  • Published : Aug 4, 2014 - 21:26
  • Updated : Aug 4, 2014 - 21:26
A ruling party lawmaker will be summoned by prosecutors this week for questioning over suspicions that he received bribes from a local train parts supplier in exchange for business favors, prosecutors said Monday.

Rep. Cho Hyun-ryong of the ruling Saenuri Party is under suspicion of taking bribes worth hundreds of millions of won from Sampyo E&C in return for awarding the private company contracts since August 2008, they said.

Cho will appear before the Seoul Central District Prosecutors’ Office in southern Seoul on Wednesday to face questioning as a suspect in the case, prosecutors said.

The alleged bribery occurred while the lawmaker was heading the Korea Rail Network Authority, the state-run railway construction company in charge of awarding contracts, and working as a member of the parliamentary land, transport and maritime affairs committee.

Under the contract inked in 2011, Sampyo E&C was to supply concrete panels to be placed beneath rail tracks on a stretch of the Jungang Line to provide stability.

The Korea Railroad Corporation, which operates the Jungang Line, however, found cracks between panels, stoking concerns that faulty parts were used.

The prosecution office said it will quiz the lawmaker on whether the bribes were used while he was seeking to be a proportional representative nominee of the Saenuri Party.

Cho was elected to the parliament on the party’s proportional ticket in general elections in April 2012, just eight months after he resigned as the KRNA chief.

Also, the prosecution office in the western port city of Incheon said it has notified Rep. Park Sang-eun of the Saenuri Party to show up for questioning on Wednesday in a separate bribery case.

The two-term lawmaker is under suspicion of receiving illegal political funding from candidates nominated to run in the June 4 general elections.

Ruling party chief Kim Moo-sung said Monday he discussed the issue with the two lawmakers.

“I learned in person that both lawmakers have faithfully responded to the prosecution’s investigation and have absolutely no intention of avoiding it,” he said during a party meeting. (Yonhap)