The Korea Herald


Ruling-party lawmaker rejects summons over alleged bribery

By 안성미

Published : June 28, 2015 - 21:47

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A ruling party lawmaker suspected of receiving illegal political funds in a high profile corruption scandal has refused to answer his summons by the prosecution, prosecution officials said Saturday.
According to the officials, Rep. Rhee In-je of the ruling Saenuri Party has refused to show up for questioning over his allegations despite an earlier promise to meet with prosecution investigators on Saturday.
The six-term lawmaker is suspected of receiving 20 million won (US$17,800) in illicit political funds from the late business tycoon Sung Wan-jong just before the 2013 general elections.
The summons came as part of the prosecution's investigation into a suspected "bribery list" left behind by Sung, the late chairman of construction firm Keangnam Enterprises Inc., who committed suicide in April.
Sung suggested in a memo that he had given illegal political funds to eight people, including Hong Moon-jong, a ruling party lawmaker who served in a key post in the election camp of President Park Geun-hye, as well as Yoo Jeong-bok and Seo Byung-soo, the current mayors of Incheon and Busan.
Rhee was part of the now-dissolved minor conservative Advancement and Unification Party when Sung served as the party's floor leader.
Prosecutors had also sought to question Rep. Kim Han-gil of the New Politics Alliance for Democracy for allegedly taking tens of millions of won from Sung while running for the main opposition party's top position in May 2013.
Kim has twice refused to answer prosecution summons, they said.
The officials from the prosecution said they will consider all "available means" to summon the two lawmakers, though they noted issuing an arrest warrant was currently not an option as parliament is in session.
According to legal experts, available measures may include pressing charges against the two without questioning them. (Yonhap)