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Prosecutors raid stock exchange, bank in probe into FSS chief's sponsored trips

Prosecutors raided the offices of a bourse operator and a bank on Friday as part of a probe into allegations that the new head of the country's financial watchdog received special treatment from financial institutions when he was a lawmaker.

Investigators from the Seoul Southern District Prosecutors' Office were sent to search the Seoul and Busan headquarters of the Korea Exchange Bank and Woori Bank and confiscate accounting documents, the office said. Raids are also being carried out at two local research institutes involved.

Kim Ki-sik (Yonhap)
Kim Ki-sik (Yonhap)

The prosecution began a probe into Kim Ki-sik, governor of the Financial Supervisory Service, over suspicions that he took trips paid for by those financial firms in 2014 and 2015.

He belonged to the parliamentary financial committee at the time, and the institutions were subject to the panel's oversight. On Tuesday, members of two opposition parties filed a formal complaint with the prosecution seeking an investigation against Kim.

Kim has apologized for the controversy but insists that no favors were requested in return. The presidential office Cheong Wa Dae has defended him, saying the trips might appear inappropriate but were "legitimate." (Yonhap)