Friday, April 17, 2009

Police seek extradition of Jang Ja-yeon's ex-manager

Chosun Ilbo files lawsuit after head named in scandal

An official request for the extradition of late actress Jang Ja-yeon's former manager from Japan has been sent to Japan's Justice Ministry through the Korean Embassy in the country.

Lee Myeong-gyun, a senior officer from the Gyeonggi Provincial Police Agency, told reporters yesterday that police sent the document, which asked for the extradition of Kim Sung-hoon, to the embassy on Sunday. It was then forwarded to the ministry.

Lee said it could take about three months to force Kim return to Korea because Japan has to go through its own legal procedures after Kim is arrested.

The Japanese courts have to make a decision on whether to approve the request within two months after Japanese prosecutors ask for an examination of the case. He will be extradited within 30 days if approval is granted.

Kim fled to Japan in December and has not returned since.

Officer Lee pledged to make an interim report on the investigation into the case soon.

"We are heading to the finish line with the probe, as about 80 percent of the investigation has been completed", he said. "We are trying to get Kim extradited, and figures who allegedly exploited Jang are still being questioned".

The police said they completed last week the first of a series of interrogation sessions with the unidentified head of an online news company. Jang was allegedly pressured to serve drinks and have sex with the man in room salons in the Gangnam area of southern Seoul.

He said that similar sessions with other people suspected to have been involved in exploiting Jang will happen this week.

Meanwhile, prosecutors at the Supreme Public Prosecutors' Office said yesterday that they have begun examining a lawsuit filed by the Chosun Ilbo newspaper firm on Friday.

The company filed a defamation suit against Democratic lawmaker Lee Jong-kul, Democratic Labor lawmaker Lee Jung-hee and the head of, an online political news outlet.

Lee Jong-kul mentioned the name of the president of the Chosun Ilbo during the National Assembly inquiry into the administration, Lee Jung-hee said it on a live TV debate show and the head of Seoprise posted it on the site.

They all claimed the name of the newspaper head is listed in an accusatory document written by Jang before her suicide.

A Chosun Ilbo official, requesting anonymity, said, "Three people defamed the president of the company even though he has nothing to do with the case".

By: Jang Joo-young, Park Yu-mi

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