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Jae-Chang Oh (Minbyun - lawyers organization for a democratic society)

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1 Jae-Chang Oh (Minbyun - lawyers organization for a democratic society)

2 Introduction????? The Prosecutor and Sponsor Scandal in 2010. A Fact-Finding Committee(FFC) established. Special Prosecutors Team(SPT) created by the Parliament. FFC announced disciplinary action against 4 prosecutors. SPT revealed indictment of 2 inferior investigators and considering filing disciplinary action of 4 prosecutors. Problems???? Corruption in public office is a chronic and ongoing problem and does serious harm to community. Judges and prosecutors are seldom punishable with bribery cases. Extreme double standard regarding bribery (case?) used toward Judges and prosecutors. Corruption in public office deeply undermines rule of law and good governance of community.

3 A corrupt act is abuse of public office (by accepting something of value in exchange for = bribe(ry)) performing an official act or decision (Article 2 para. 4 of the Korean Corruption Prevention Act).

4 Non-judicial officials cases???? The first example is a 1996 case where the manager of a branch office of a bank was found guilty of bribery. The manager had accepted the hospitality of a bank client by joining him for dinner on two occasions. The total value of the gifts received by the bank manger was 83,500 won, or approximately 80 U.S. dollars. The court found that the gifts, though small in value, constituted a bribe because the purpose of the dinners was to persuade the bank manager to approve the clients loan request. The second example involves a manager of a government owned public parking business. The manager openly received 200,000 won, approximately 200 U.S. dollars, in exchange for his decision to hire an employee. He received the money in the presence of the public and spent the money treating his subordinates to dinner. He argued that the money was not in his interest because he spent it for the sake of his company or post. They was found guilty which resulting in the loss of their jobs and pensions. Judicial officials cases????? The first case is the bribery of 15 judges of the Uijeongbu district court in 1997. These judges took bribes in the name of holiday or vacation gifts from 14 lawyers. As a result of this affair, two judges resigned and five judges were suspended, but none were convicted of any wrongdoing. Next is the 1999 case where a total of 300 judges, prosecutors, officers of the court, polices were accused of accepting bribes as commissions to help a lawyer surnamed Lee to accept cases. The investigation revealed that 25 public prosecutors took bribes. In the end, the 6 prosecutors resigned, 7 prosecutors were reprimanded by demotion, and one chief judge of Daejon high court resigned. None were convicted of any crime. The next case involves a man named Yoon who was suspected of giving bribes to public prosecutors and the police in 2003. In 2007, a special investigation team was established, but the team failed to discover the goal of the illegal transactions or who controlled them from behind. In the end Yoon was convicted, however, no judge or prosecutor was convicted. In 2006, a man surnamed Kim was imprisoned and sentenced for offering bribes to a chief judge at the Seoul High Court, a prosecutor, and a chief of police. The chief judge of the Seoul High Court was convicted of accepting a bribe and served time in prison. Nevertheless, he was recently reinstated to be eligible to become a lawyer in August 2010. Next is the 2007 case where a lawyer named Kim, who served as in house counsel as Samsung Corporation, released a list of public prosecutors who had accepted bribes. Several high ranking national prosecutors were included on the list, so the independent special prosecutor team was established. Nevertheless, no indictments were made and the special prosecutor team was dissolved. These cases show that high profile cases of bribery involving judges and prosecutors arise every year, but fair punishments or clear explanations are rarely provided in the end. Even when convicted, the guilty judges and prosecutors have received only light penalties and were often granted later amnesty or reinstated to their positions. Obviously, these kinds of results are highly unlikely to deter a judge of prosecutor from accepting or soliciting a bribe.

5 Lack of willing witnesses, accusers to report or reveal the fact of giving a bribe because of his own punishment Difficult to show quid pro quo (causational link between receiving a bribe and abuse of public office affected by the bribe) Close relationship among prosecutors and judges in cases of judicial misconduct (strong collegiality not to punish colleagues)

6 1.Definition of Good Governance(???) In the community of nations, governance is considered good and democratic to the degree in which the process of decision- making and the process by which decisions are implemented are transparent. Good governance promotes equity, participation, pluralism, transparency, accountability and the rule of law, in a manner that is effective, efficient and enduring. Good governance assures that corruption is minimized, the views of minorities are taken into account and that the voices of the most vulnerable in society are heard in decision-making. In other words, one of the greatest threats to good governance comes from corruption which undermines transparency and participation. 2. The gravity or importance of public office (???) Corruption of public officials has been a problem throughout history. Nations, provinces, and cities are run through the collective decision making of public officials, so it follows that public officials have an enormous impact on citizens, societies, and nations. 3. Problems of accountability, equality, and rule of law When we see a corrupted judge or prosecutor go unpunished, it shakes our societys belief in accountability, equality, and the rule of law to the core. This happens in three ways. First, judges and public prosecutors are the very officials entrusted by society to dispel corruption. When they themselves are corrupt, we can be sure that corruption is running unchecked and that our highest officials charged with upholding the rule of law have so little respect for it. In principal, the corrupt prosecutors or judges going unpunished is totally against the principal of accountability. Second, this is also totally against our conscience (even ??or sound(?) common sense)because it is the most unimaginable extreme example of using double standard regarding bribery case? or those with more power are less likely to be punishable. It is also against the principal of equality because it is not fair and just. Third, and most generally, If a judge or prosecutors discretion can be purchased, then serious distortions of right and wrong slowly trickle though our other sacred institutions such as schools, families, commercial institutions, and private rights. Corruption by judges and prosecutors is an egregious criminal act beyond description because these are the officials in our society that are entrusted with duty of upholding the law. These violations shall shake accountability, equability and rule of law which are the foundation of our society and have clear negative repercussion on the effect of good governance

7 1.Laws to protect accusers, witnesses 2.Create a new independent agency to monitor and prosecute misconduct by judicial officials 3.Strengthen criminal penalties for all corrupt officials 4.Implement a code of ethics for public officials

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