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Prosecutors are swayed by internal conflict and external pressure

Prosecutors are swayed by internal conflict and external pressure

Posted October. 22, 2013 04:32,   

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Yoon Suk-ryul, head of Yeoju branch Supreme Prosecutor`s Office, who was director of special investigation team probing into the message posting by National Intelligence Service, attended national audit, and said he reported investigation on a Twitter posting by a National Intelligence Service employee to the Cho Young-gon, head of Seoul Central District Prosecutors’ Office, and progressed with it. Cho said it was a notice and he didn`t approve it. Before knowing who`s saying the truth, the fact that the two people was summoned to national audit and confronted each other is a shame to prosecutors.

Putting together national audit testimony, it appears true that the investigation`s seizure and search, arrest and arraignment change were promoted without permission from the top.

Prosecutor office is not an independent institution. It`s different from judges. According to prosecutor office law, prosecutors should report important issues to the prosecutor head, and can not decide independently. Deciding whether to obey to boss can never happen.

The Twitter postings by National Intelligence Service employee contain many content that support or denigrate a specific candidate. They can serve as a decisive evidence to proving guilty of crimes already indicted. It is hard to understand that Cho disapproved saying it can be politically used by the opposition parties. Cho is likely candidate of prosecutor head, and it is suspicious that he read countenance of the Justice Ministry or Presidential Office.

Prosecutors are known not to withdraw arraignment change on former National Intelligence Service chief Won Se-hoon. This means excluding Yun in duty but can not exclude investigation results. If prosecutor does not withdraw, the court will decide whether to do so. Yet, the seizure and arrest by the investigation team were done without notice to National Intelligence Service as stipulated by National Intelligence Service law, meaning whether evidence gathering can be justified can be of dispute.

The National Intelligence Service is suspected of having posted 55,689 messages on Twitter for three months until the presidential election. This is a more explicit intervention on election than postings on Internet communities as written on the existing arraignment. National Intelligence Service employees` maneuver at a secret space to manipulate public opinions is a violation of duty to be politically neutral and is a shameful act.

Twitter postings are delivered to just followers. The online postings and Twitter messages may not have had huge influence as to change the election results. However, the Presidential Office appears concerned on the ever-deepening issue of National Intelligence Service`s alleged election intervention. Opposition forces including the main opposition Democratic United Party is strengthening the offensive. It is time for leading and opposition parties to share common ground for a genuine reform of National Intelligence Service rather than treating the matter politically.