SEOUL– A senior judge at the Seoul High Court has been selected as the final candidate to succeed outgoing Supreme Court Justice Park Sang-ok, the top court said Thursday.

Chief Justice Kim Myeong-su picked Seoul High Court Judge Cheon Dae-yeop out of three candidates proposed by the Supreme Court Justice Candidate Recommending Committee and recommended him to President Moon Jae-in for official appointment, the court said.

Cheong Wa Dae announced later that Moon plans to submit a motion on Cheon’s nomination to the National Assembly.

It will be forwarded formally to lawmakers next week, Cheong Wa Dae spokesman Kang Min-seok said in a brief press statement. He did not specify the date.

The nominee is required to undergo a confirmation hearing at the parliament, with Park scheduled to retire in May.

The 57-year-old Cheon had previously served at the Busan High Court as a senior presiding judge, the Supreme Court as a judicial researcher and the Supreme Court-affiliated Sentencing Commission as a member. In particular, he is known for his expertise in criminal law.

“Cheon has all the basic qualities of a Supreme Court justice, such as the independence of the judiciary, guarantee of basic rights and a firm belief in the protection of the socially underprivileged. He also has the ability to make reasonable and fair judgments,” the top court said.

Cheon is also known as an upright judge, as his personal wealth was reported at 273 million won (US$241,200), the smallest among 144 senior judges obliged to disclose their net worth annually.

Source: Yonhap News Agency