| South Korea`s spy agency Thursday resumed its raid on Lee Seok-ki, a lawmaker of the minority United Progressive Party (UPP), and his office at the National Assembly as part of an ongoing investigation into the allegation that he conspired to commit armed rebellion and violated the National Security Law.
The National Intelligence Service (NIS) reportedly found that Lee and members of his "Revolutionary Organization" led by him met about 40 times from late 2010 until recently, in addition to a secret get-together in May. According to the intelligence agency, around 10 of the meetings were large-scale ones involving 100 to 300 members. The other meetings are believed to be clandestine ones involving two to 10 members.
NIS investigators also reportedly investigating the source and use of 150 million won (134,953 U.S. dollars) in cash that they found in a shoe shelf during a Wednesday raid on Lee`s office in Mapo-gu, western Seoul. Some say that the confiscated cash includes 600 dollars and Russian money worth about 300 dollars.
The NIS and the prosecution Thursday sought arrest warrants for three other UPP members, including Hong Sun-seok, vice chairman of the party`s branch in Gyeonggi Province, on charges of conspiracy of rebellion and violation of the National Security Law. The Suwon District Court plans to hold hearings for the warrants. The NIS and the prosecution expected the court to issue the arrest warrants, as they had secured evidence enough to make their cases against the suspects.
Reportedly, the arrest warrants will likely specifically state that the suspects played important roles in organizing a 130-man meeting in May at a religious facility in western Seoul to conspire to destroy major state infrastructure facilities.
The NIS also plans to summon another six people subject to its raids. It has been known that the agency delivered a written notification to Kim Keun-rae, a vice chairman of the UPP`s Gyeonggi Province branch, urging him to come to the NIS headquarters in southern Seoul by 9:00 a.m. Friday. "We expect that more arrest warrants will be sought," an NIS official said.
Meanwhile, Lee denied the allegations against him at a party meeting at the National Assembly. "All the charges against me are a fabrication," Lee claimed. "This is an unprecedentedly tremendous repression scheme since the beginning of history."