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Special investigation unit secures audit records for Sewol sinking

South Korea's Supreme Prosecutors' Office (Yonhap)
South Korea's Supreme Prosecutors' Office (Yonhap)
A special unit of the Supreme Prosecutors’ Office launched Nov. 11 to reinvestigate the 2014 Sewol ferry disaster raided the Board of Audit and Inspection on Thursday and secured audit records for a number of government ministries from the aftermath of the sinking.

Shortly after the disaster, the audit agency conducted probes into relevant government bodies, including the Coast Guard, to find out why a new locally developed Navy ship was not mobilized to aid the rescue operations.

South Korea’s Navy had refused to deploy the ship, saying it was not fit to carry out the rescue work.

At the time, the auditing body also studied a string of government actions at the time of the rescue operations to determine whether they constituted negligence or malfeasance.

The raid is the second major search for the special unit. On Nov. 22, it seized the travel records for the rescue operations at the Coast Guard’s headquarters and its regional branches.

The special unit said it wants to look through the board’s ex-post audit records for multiple government ministries and is not seeking to press criminal charges against the board.

By Choi Si-young (