Justice ministry to beef up prosecution’s capability to respond to corruption, serious crimes

SEOUL, July 26 (Yonhap) — The Justice Ministry will seek to dramatically beef up the prosecution’s investigative capabilities to deal with corruption and other serious crimes and launch a special investigation team to fight tax evasion, the ministry said Tuesday.

The plans were part of the ministry’s 2022 policy direction briefed to President Yoon Suk-yeol as the ministry seeks to restore power to the prosecution whose direct investigative authority was scaled down under the preceding liberal Moon Jae-in administration’s prosecution reform drive.

Under the plans, the ministry will bolster the Supreme Prosecutors Office’s intelligence gathering team and assign a prosecutor in charge of investigative intelligence to each prosecutors office. Criminal proceeds recovery teams will also be set up at major prosecutors offices, the ministry noted.

Since taking office in May, Justice Minister Han Dong-hoon has reinstated prosecution units investigating violent or offshore crimes and allowed prosecutors in charge of criminal cases to open a direct investigation without prior approval from the prosecution chief in the same vein.

To better contain tax evasion, the ministry will also launch a special team this year to be in charge of investigations into tax or tariff evasion cases at home and abroad as well as illegal offshore property accumulation.

The ministry will also follow through with Yoon’s campaign pledges to eliminate the justice minister’s authority to oversee prosecution investigations and draw up an independent state budget dedicated to the prosecution.

The ministry also plans to set up a special prosecution investigation team to deal with crimes against women and children while establishing a control tower to be in charge of immigration policies, the ministry said.

Source: Yonhap News Agency

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