Police on Sunday raided a local publishing company run by an influential blogger as part of a probe into allegations that he ran a massive scheme to manipulate online comments in news articles about President Moon Jae-in.
Police sent investigators to search the premises in Paju, north of Seoul, and confiscate evidence, including digital files and surveillance footage, officials said.
Law enforcement authorities are investigating the suspected rigging of Internet news comments by the 48-year-old, surnamed Kim, who's now been charged along with two accomplices over the scandal. Kim, who goes by the nickname "Druking," is alleged to have used a software program to jack up the number of clicks in support of comments critical of the president in certain news articles.
The incident has sparked a fierce political dispute ahead of the June 13 local elections, as Rep. Kim Kyoung-soo of the ruling Democratic Party, a close aide to President Moon, is known to have been in contact with Druking for years.
The Seoul Metropolitan Police Agency on Friday said Kim had sent Druking messages that contained the web addresses of certain news articles related to the president.(Yonhap)